Nowadays in Turkey, what with the recent arrest of a 17-year-old for insulting president Erdoğan on social media, you can never be too cautious where online political satire is concerned, or online anything for that matter.
Syrian president Assad paid a surprise pre-Christmas visit with his wife to Our Lady of Damascus in the capital's eastern suburbs which has often been targeted by rebel forces. Assad reassured the congregation that he's the only one looking after their and other minorities' interests as he alone is appreciative of their human-shield qualities.
In his annual press conference, Russian president Vladimir Putin answered a wide range of questions for more than three hours where he extolled the virtues of Donald Trump, decried the failings of Tayyip Erdogan and nominated FIFA's president, Sepp Blatter, currently suspended pending a corruption investigation, for the Nobel Peace Prize. Peculiarly, no questions were asked about the onslaught on press freedom or the systematic silencing of independent voices in Russia.
Meeting briefly at the sidelines of the climate talks in Paris, Russian president Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Barack Obama made an effort to establish some kind of rapport between them but clearly their heart wasn't in it.