Russian President Vladimir Putin supported the amendment to "nullify" his presidential terms, and the Russian Parliament immediately approved it. All that remains in the way now is a decision from the Constitutional Court.
This was stated by the head of state in the Russian Duma.
“Another suggestion is to remove the ban preventing me from taking part in the 2024 election. In general, this option would be possible, but on one condition: if the Russian Constitutional Court says that it does not contradict the Constitution," he said.
Earlier today, a United Russia MP Valentina Tereshkova suggested "either removing the restriction of the number of presidential terms in the Constitution, or ... to adopt the possibility for the incumbent president to be re-elected to this position, already in accordance with the updated Constitution".
“The proposal made by Tereshkova, for whom we all have great respect... [was] to exclude the number of terms from the Constitution. A similar idea was actually voiced at my meeting in St. Petersburg. I then said that I did not want to go back to the Soviet Union. I was slightly incorrect [in the wording -ed.],” Putin stressed.
At the same time, he opposed the proposal to extend the current president's term in power.
“There were proposals to amend the Constitution and extend the term of the incumbent, your obedient servant. To do this on the basis that citizens vote for the amendment. A nationwide vote will take place in April. In that case, it would mean that the president's powers continue as a result of the non-alternative elections. That, in my opinion, is also wrong,” he said.
Putin is convinced that Russia's "strong presidential vertical" is absolutely necessary.
“The current situation in the economy [and other spheres] calls for this once again. First of all, it is necessary for stability. There is a parliamentary democracy, but at the present stage of our existence, it does not suit us,” the head of state added.
Subsequently, the State Duma supported the amendment to "nullify" Putin's presidential terms with 380 deputies voting in favor, 43 against, and 1 abstaining.
The next presidential election in Russia is expected on March 17, 2024. Putin has been in power for 21 years.
In 2008, Russia amended its Constitution and extended the presidential term from 4 to 6 years. In 2036, Putin will turn 84.