The head of the Russian-occupied Kherson region Vladimir Saldo was put into a medically induced coma, his condition is assessed as moderate, RIA Novosti reports. The official was hospitalized yesterday. First, he was transferred from the hospital in Kherson to the annexed Crimea, and then sent by special aircraft to Moscow.
Later, a statement was posted on Saldo’s telegram channel: "Following the advice of doctors, I agreed to undergo a medical examination. According to preliminary estimates, the deterioration in my health was due to the complications caused by COVID-19. Despite the illness, I continue to perform my duties as the head of the region, held working meetings and field events in the region. Overall, I feel good. Doctors say there is positive dynamics."
The telegram channel Baza was the first to report that Saldo was in coma.
After that, Deputy head of the Russia-appointed Kherson regional administration, Kirill Stremousov, accused the telegram channel of working for Ukraine.
“Baza did not support Russia in the operation against the Nazi regime of Ukraine, promoted LGBT ideas and worked in the interests of ethnic criminal groups, including the interests of foreign countries. Rumors about the coma of Vladimir Saldo are direct participation in the war on the side of the enemy, " said Stremousov.
Baza also reported that doctors didn’t rule out an attempt on Saldo's life and checked him for the presence of poisonous substances.
"The results of blood tests will be able to clarify whether there is any poison in his body, only after a couple of days. During the official's illness, his duties will be performed by the chairman of the government of the Kherson region Sergey Yeliseyev. Prior to that, he served in the FSB and worked in the government of the Kaliningrad region,” Baza writes.
Volodymyr Saldo is a former Ukrainian government official and politician who supported the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In 2002-2012, he was the mayor of Kherson, later - a deputy of the Verkhovna Rada from the party of Viktor Yanukovych. In March 2022, Saldo claimed that "Kherson is Ukraine", but in April he was appointed head of the regional administration controlled by the Russian Federation.