Former Russian president Vladimir Putin who enjoys a reputation of being a very strong and active man among Russians, has included underwater archaeology to his long list of outdoor pursuits, diving in the Black Sea with a mission to explore the submerged ruins of Russia’s Atlantic — an ancient Greek city.

According to state news reports, Putin — a novice only attempting his third scuba dive, descended just two meters beneath the water and happened to ‘come across’ two 6-century-old Greek amphorae urns that had been waiting for him on the floor of the sea.

Luckily, there was a full presence of media on hand to film the incident, which truly surprised archaeology experts who had spent two years in that area and found only a few pottery shards.

This was perhaps the most publicized incident of the week that became the subject of many critics’ ridicule. Critics said this was a sign of increasing weariness of Putin’s macho photo ops (like bare-chested fishing, or piloting a ‘water bomber’ over the forest), while others saw the dive as another farcical stunt designed to boost Putin’s image before the upcoming presidential elections.

Later, the Russian prime minister’s chief spokesman Dmitri Peskov admitted that Putin’s remarkable discovery during the scuba-diving expedition was staged.

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