Putin savours record win, securing six more years at Russia's helm

Cheryl Sanders
March 20, 2018

The Kremlin pushed for high participation to give greater legitimacy to a fourth term for Putin, who is already Russia's longest-serving leader since Joseph Stalin. Trump ignored a shouted question in the Oval Office on whether he raised the poisoning in the call with Putin.

Near-final figures put turnout at 67.7 per cent, just shy of the 70 per cent the Kremlin was reported to have been aiming for before the vote.

Zhirinovsky, a staple of Russian politics since he first ran for president in 1991, told the Interfax news agency after the election that he expected Putin to follow the lead of Chinese President Xi Jinping, who recently abolished presidential term limits in his country. "I am a member of your team", the Russian leader said. Days before the election, a former Russian spy was attacked in England with Russian-manufactured nerve agent, a move that British Prime Minister Theresa May denounced as "an unlawful use of force", language that parallels that of worldwide law justifying an armed reprisal.

Russia's Vladimir Putin secured another six years in power after a record election win, but global leaders were slow to congratulate him Monday amid a new spike in tensions, as opponents accused him of vote rigging.

French President Emmanuel Macron wished Vladimir Putin success on Monday in "modernising Russia" after his re-election, but urged Moscow to shed light on the "unacceptable" attempted assassination of an ex-spy in Britain.

"Prime Minister Abe called President Putin to congratulate him", Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement. Effectiveness of Russian Federation kept a strong check on the United States and the space created by the fall of the Soviet Union negatively affected the interests of small countries.

The Kremlin said the two leaders also discussed the Ukrainian crisis and the 7-year Syrian war and talked about a possible bilateral meeting. U.S. Sen. John McCain famously dismissed Russian Federation several years ago as "a gas station masquerading as a country".

Here's a look at what to expect from Putin's next six years in power, for Russia's rivals, neighbours and its own 147 million citizens.

The Central Election Commission said Monday that with virtually all the ballots counted, Putin won almost 77 percent of the vote.

Yelena Solovyova of St. Petersburg, a 43-year-old manager, said she voted for others in past elections, but went for Putin this time because "I don't want any collapse that could make my life and the life of my children worse".

Tensions between the USA and Russian Federation have soared in recent years, particularly after the US intelligence community concluded in a report made public last year that Moscow sought to meddle in the 2016 presidential election.

With U.S. -Russian relations at a long-time low, Peskov said, "Putin remains open for normalizing relations with our American partners where it is in our interests". He also laughed off a suggestion that he could take a six-year break before moving to reclaim the presidency in 2030.

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