Image taken from video shows Russian President Vladimir Putin and his wife Lyudmila Putina being interviewed in a program on a local news TV channel on June 6, 2013. Putin and his wife Lyudmila Putina on Thursday announced their divorce. (Xinhua)
MOSCOW -- Russian President Vladimir Putin and his wife Lyudmila Putina on Thursday announced their divorce.
"It was our mutual decision, our marriage is over," Putin said in an interview aired on a local TV news channel.TV footage showed the couple appeared well-dressed and seemed calm and relaxed during the interview, even with smiles on their faces.
Putina, born in 1958 in Russia's Kaliningrad, was married to Putin in 1983. The couple have two daughters. The first lady was rarely seen in the public together with Putin.
"We practically don't see each other. Each of us has their own life," said Putin in the interview. "All my activity, all (my) work is connected to being in the public eye. Some people like this, some don't, but there are people who are completely incompatible with this," Putin said, who emphasized "We will remain very close forever."
Putina admitted she doesn't like publicity and has troubles with flying. As for their daughters, "We are very fond of our children, we are proud of them, and we see them all the time," she added.
Local media reports said the couple went to see a ballet performance Thursday evening, the first time the public saw them appear together since Putin's inauguration in May 2012.