A Russian woman is claiming to be the oldest person in the world, but says her upcoming 129th birthday is nothing but ‘punishment’.
Koku Istambulova, from Chechnya, says she has not had a single happy day in her entire life, and has no idea how she has managed to live this long.
Istambulova, who shuns meat but loves fermented milk, believes it simply is ‘God’s will’ that she will live to see 129 next month.
The claim that Istambulova is about to turn 129 is made by the Russian government, and is based on her internal passport, which shows her date of birth as 1 June 1889.
If correct, Istambulova was already 27 when the Russian Revolution unseated Tsar Nicholas II, 55 when World War II ended, and 102 when the Soviet Union collapsed a generation ago.
During the war she recalls ‘scary’ Nazi German tanks passing her family home in a village in Chechnya.
She and her family were later deported along with the entire Chechen nation Kazakhstan and Siberia by Stalin who accused them of Nazi collaboration.
Asked how she lived so long, Istambulova told an interviewer: ‘It was God’s will. I did nothing to make it happen.