Though Steven Seagal once made a career out of martial arts based action movies, his recent claim to fame is bizarre cameo appearances alongside controversial world leaders and even MMA fighters. From Russian president Vladimir Putin to former UFC champion Anderson Silva, Seagal’s exploits are topics of conversation for longtime fans, as well as sports and politics pundits.
Seagal’s latest venture was to Minsk, where he stayed in the home of Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko. The controversial ruler, labeled the “last dictator in Europe,” gifted the actor with two watermelons and a carrot during an excursion into the gardens.
“Eat, this is very good for your health.” said Lukashenko as he handed Seagal a carrot he peeled himself.
Lukashenko garnered negative press from Western media for his “Soviet nostalgia” in domestic policy such as continued state ownership of essential industries. Implausible statements such as his praise for Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany and the infamous “better to be a dictator than gay” also garnered bad publicity for the strongman.
This marks the third questionable leader that Seagal has visited in recent years. The Aikido master rubbed shoulders with Putin, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, and now Belarus’ Lukashenko.