Berlusconi's friend recounts hunting story of Putin brutally killing roe deer and cutting out its heart

Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin

A friend of former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi shared a disturbing incident that reportedly caused Berlusconi to question his longstanding friendship with Vladimir Putin, according to a report by Corriere della Sera on May 5.

Mattia Feltri, a friend of Berlusconi, recounted an unsettling hunting trip where Putin demonstrated a level of cruelty that shook the Italian leader. "There was a moment that really tested Berlusconi because Putin showed him his ‘cruel nature,’ which he ‘could not imagine in such a kind and rational person,'" Feltri explained.

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During the trip, Putin invited Berlusconi to hunt. "When we arrived in the forest, he gave me a rifle," Feltri quoted the former Italian PM as saying. Berlusconi felt uneasy as they walked through the snow and encountered two roe deer. Putin pointed to one and told Berlusconi, “This is yours. Shoot it.” Berlusconi declined to shoot, prompting Putin to kill both animals himself. He then approached the fallen deer with a knife, cut out its heart, and presented a piece of the still-bleeding meat on a wooden tray, proclaiming, “This will be an extraordinary meal."

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Berlusconi was visibly disturbed by the event. "He was shocked," Feltri said. "He hid behind a tree and vomited."

The unsettling moment was followed by a heavy silence, broken only by Berlusconi's attempt to rationalize the behavior. “Maybe it's just a hunter's habit,” he finally said, trying to dismiss the gruesome act.

Berlusconi, who had been a friend of the Russian leader for many years and visited Putin in Crimea in 2015, passed away in June 2023. The story highlights a complex facet of the relationship between the two leaders, marked by a stark revelation of Putin's harsher side.

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