MOSCOW (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin tried to reassure Russians over the ailing economy and said Washington wanted “vassals” rather than allies in his annual phone-in on Thursday, but offered no new financial remedies and gave no ground over Ukraine.
For nearly four hours, the Russian leader fielded mostly tame questions from across the country on problems ranging from Iran’s disputed nuclear programme and the conflict in east Ukraine to the price of milk and the state of roads.
MOSCOW, April 16 (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin said
on Thursday Russia’s economy could return to growth in less than
two years, despite Western sanctions which he said were intended
to “contain” his country.
In a confident performance during a televised call-in show,
Putin sounded defiant and patriotic, assuring viewers that
Russia will survive an economic crisis deepened by the sanctions
and low oil prices, and will always stand up to the West.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday Russia’s economy could return to growth in less than two years, even though he considers it unlikely that the West will lift economic sanctions over the Ukraine crisis soon.
In a televised call-in with the nation, Putin acknowledged that there were difficulties for Russia’s economy, which has been hit by a fall in global oil prices as well as the sanctions.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Several hundred Russians paid tribute to opposition figure Boris Nemtsov on Tuesday by lighting candles and laying flowers on the bridge near the Kremlin where he was shot dead 40 days ago.
A few drivers answered opposition leaders’ calls to sound their horns at 11 a.m. while the mourners stood in silence, marking a Russian Orthodox tradition of honoring people 40 days after they die. Some wiped away tears.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin signed a treaty with Georgia’s rebel South Ossetia region on Wednesday that almost completely integrates it with Russia, alarming Georgia and the West a year after Moscow took over Crimea.
Tbilisi described the “alliance and integration” treaty as a “move aimed at annexation” and the United States and European Union said they would not recognize the agreement, which the EU depicted as a threat to regional security and stability.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia ruled out handing Crimea back to Ukraine on Tuesday and a Defense Ministry official said nuclear-capable long-range bombers were being sent to the Black Sea peninsula as part of war games.
The huge military exercises, in which the Northern Fleet was put on full alert on Monday and will range from the Arctic to the Black Sea, appear to be a show of force and defiance on the anniversary of the annexation of Crimea.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Opposition supporters will march through Moscow on Sunday in memory of Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov, whose murder has increased concern about Russia’s future among opponents of President Vladimir Putin.
Thousands of people laid flowers and lit candles on Saturday on a bridge near the Kremlin where the opposition politician and former deputy prime minister was shot dead late on Friday.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin and Russia’s involvement in the war in Ukraine, was shot dead steps from the Kremlin in central Moscow late on Friday.
Nemtsov, 55, was shot four times in the back by assailants in a white car as he walked across a bridge over the Moskva River with a Ukrainian woman who was unhurt.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – In Russia, Vladimir Putin likes to portray himself as the saviour of the nation. In Europe and the United States he has come to be seen as a threat to the new world order.
What the Russian president does next in Ukraine is key to the country’s future, as well as that of Europe and his own.
MOSCOW, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin has called
Europe’s bluff over east Ukraine as Russia-backed separatists
seize a strategic town in defiance of a ceasefire brokered by
France and Germany.
The attack on Debaltseve by rebels loyal to the Russian
president amounts to a test of the West’s resolve to stand up to
him – at the risk of an escalation of the conflict.