The Siberian Yeti - a real creature or a tourist attraction ? Image Credit: DangrafArt / Pixabay
One of Putin's longest-serving regional leaders has admitted to using a fake Yeti to attract tourists.
Siberia's Shoria Mountains have been home to a number of unexplained sightings of a large, bipedal, ape-like creature over the years, but now it seems as though at least some of these were a hoax.
Aman Tuleyev - who was governor of Kemerovo Oblast from 1997 to 2018 - has made the rather startling confession that he employed a man in a Yeti costume to drum up interest in the region.
"I must admit, I confess, yes, it was I who fueled interest in the Yeti," he said.
Initially, Tuleyev had tried to drum up business by arranging an annual Yeti Day with the promise of a cash prize being offered to anyone who could produce proof of the creature's existence.
"People started coming, rushed to scour the forests," he said. "Of course, no-one found the Yeti, but Shoria attracted increased attention."
Once interest in the hunt had faded, however, he told his district chief - Vladimir Makuta - to "find someone tall, throw off his office suit, turn a fur coat inside out and run around... shouting so that tourists notice but they must not catch him."
Despite the ruse however, Tuleyev remains adamant that the creature does actually exist.
"Many local hunters swear that they saw a 2-meter giant with their own eyes in remote places, covered with hair," he said.
"Scientists have not yet been able to meet with him, but they seem to have found traces."
Source: New York Post | Comments (107)
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