Putin gives eight golden ‘rings of power’ to CIS leaders, keeping another for himself
At the informal Commonwealth of Independent States summit in St. Petersburg, Russian President Vladimir Putin presented the CIS leaders with club rings that look like they are made of yellow and white gold. Each ring’s design incorporates the CIS emblem and the words “Happy New Year 2023.”
Of all the recipients — the presidents of Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, as well as the Armenian prime minister — only Alexander Lukashenko put on his ring as soon as he received it.
Putin kept the ninth club ring for himself.
Russian Telegram channels are busy comparing Putin’s gift idea to Sauron’s rings of power from J. R. R. Tolkien’s classic.
The informal CIS summit took place in St. Petersburg on December 26–27.
CIS leaders had another informal meeting on Putin’s birthday, October 7. A week later, at the CIS summit in Astana, Kazakhstan, member countries signed a number of policy documents aimed at “deepening cooperation within the commonwealth.”