Vladimir will not attend the Soviet leader’s funeral on Saturday because he is “too busy”.

Putin’s latest snub for Gorbachev: Vladimir will NOT attend the Soviet leader’s funeral on Saturday because he is “too busy”.

  • His spokesman Dmitry Peskov said he could not come because of working hours
  • Comes after Putin was filmed laying a bouquet of red roses next to his coffin
  • There was a huge wave of mourning for Gorbachev in the West, but not in Russia
  • Gorbachev was respected in the West for instigating the fall of the Soviet Union

Putin will not attend the funeral of last Soviet leader Gorbachev on Saturday because he is “too busy”.

His spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “The farewell ceremony and the funeral will take place on September 3, but unfortunately the President’s work schedule does not allow him (to attend).”

It comes after Putin was shown on Russian state television laying a bouquet of red roses near Gorbachev’s open coffin at the hospital where he died on Tuesday at the age of 91.

He paused for a moment in silence, bowed his head and briefly placed his hand on the coffin, then made the sign of the cross.

Despite a huge flood of tributes from the West after Gorbachev’s death, the reaction in Russia was much more muted, as many despised him after he precipitated the fall of the Soviet Union.

Although the collapse of the Soviet Union brought freedom to countries like Ukraine, it left Russia in economic chaos and saw its international influence decline.

Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said he was unable to attend the funeral due to his working hours. Pictured: Putin bows his head as he pays his respects to the last Soviet leader, Gorbachev, at his open coffin

Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said he was unable to attend the funeral due to his working hours. Pictured: Putin bows his head as he pays his respects to the last Soviet leader, Gorbachev, at his open coffin

Despite a huge flood of tributes from the West after Gorbachev's death, the reaction in Russia was much more muted, as many despised him after he precipitated the fall of the Soviet Union. Pictured: Putin and Gorbachev

Despite a huge flood of tributes from the West after Gorbachev’s death, the reaction in Russia was much more muted, as many despised him after he precipitated the fall of the Soviet Union. Pictured: Putin and Gorbachev

Pictured: Putin looks solemn as he stands by Gorbachev's open coffin in footage shot by Russian state television

Pictured: Putin looks solemn as he stands by Gorbachev’s open coffin in footage shot by Russian state television

Elsewhere, the Kremlin issued a condolence letter in which Putin described Gorbachev as a “politician and statesman of enormous influence on the course of world history.”

Putin added: “He led our country in a time of complex, dramatic changes, comprehensive foreign policy, economic and social challenges.”

Gorbachev’s funeral service will take place on Saturday in Moscow’s Columned Hall.

It is historically used for funeral services of high officials, including Joseph Stalin in 1953.

Gorbachev will then be buried next to his wife Raisa, who died in 1999, in the Novedevichy Cemetery in Moscow.

Pictured: Putin looks at a photo of Gorbachev, Russia's last Soviet leader, who died Tuesday at the age of 91

Pictured: Putin looks at a photo of Gorbachev, Russia’s last Soviet leader, who died Tuesday at the age of 91

Though Gorbachev triggered the end of the Soviet Union, Putin has spent much of the past 20 years reversing his legacy. Pictured: Putin places a hand on Gorbachev's open coffin

Though Gorbachev triggered the end of the Soviet Union, Putin has spent much of the past 20 years reversing his legacy. Pictured: Putin places a hand on Gorbachev’s open coffin

Gorbachev's funeral service will take place on Saturday in Moscow's Columned Hall. He is then buried next to his wife Raisa in the Novedevichy Cemetery in Moscow. Pictured: Gorbachev and Raisa in 1992

Gorbachev’s funeral service will take place on Saturday in Moscow’s Columned Hall. He is then buried next to his wife Raisa in the Novedevichy Cemetery in Moscow. Pictured: Gorbachev and Raisa in 1992

The Kremlin spokesman said Gorbachev’s service will have some “elements of a state funeral,” including an honor guard, and that the ceremony will be organized with state help.

Putin has spent much of his 20 years as president undoing parts of Gorbachev’s legacy and calling the collapse of the Soviet Union the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century.

This includes a crackdown on independent media and political opposition, something critics say has thwarted Gorbachev’s efforts to inject “glasnost,” or openness, into the political system.

In addition, Putin has sought to reassert Russia’s influence in Ukraine, one of the countries that gained independence when the Soviet Union fell apart, through a full-blown war.

Pictured: Putin also made a sign of the cross after paying his respects to Gorbachev in Russia

Pictured: Putin also made a sign of the cross after paying his respects to Gorbachev in Russia

Putin has spent much of his 20 years as president undoing parts of Gorbachev's legacy and calling the collapse of the Soviet Union the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century. This includes a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, one of the countries that gained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Pictured: Gorbachev and Putin

Putin has spent much of his 20 years as president undoing parts of Gorbachev’s legacy and calling the collapse of the Soviet Union the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century. This includes a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, one of the countries that gained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Pictured: Gorbachev and Putin

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https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11169237/Vladimir-WONT-attend-Soviet-leaders-funeral-Saturday-busy.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Vladimir will not attend the Soviet leader’s funeral on Saturday because he is “too busy”.

Bradford Betz

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