Moscow, May 7: Vladimir Putin was sworn in as Russia's president for a fourth term on Monday. He was sworn-in a president for the fourth time. Putin has been in power since 1999. In the elections held in March this year Putin won nearly 77 percent of the votes. His opponent Alexei Navalny was banned from contesting the elections.
He has promised to reinvigorate the country's economy. Russia’s confrontation with the west dominated Putin’s previous presidential term. Putin during his swearing-in ceremony said, "I consider it my duty and my life's aim to do everything possible for Russia, for its present and for its future." The swearing-in ceremony took place in the ornate Andreyev Hall, part of the Kremlin palace complex.
US action star and now Russian citizen Steven Seagal, former German chancellor Gerhard Schroder and Naina Yeltsina, the widow of Putin's late predecessor Boris Yeltsin were also present at the ceremony. Putin thanked Russians during his swearing-in. He said, “As head of state I will do all I can to multiply the strength, prosperity and fame of Russia."
Meanwhile, opposition leader Alexei Navalny called on Russians to protest across the country on Saturday. Nearly 1,600 protesters including Navalny were detained during the protest against Putin. Later Navalny was released. Navalny was barred from challenging Putin’s return to Kremlin. Russia has strained ties with the West because of Putin’s moves to capture Crimea from Ukraine and to launch a military campaign in Syria in support President Bashar al-Assad. Putin was also accused of election meddling in the US.
The constitution bars Putin from running again when his fourth term ends in 2024. But he has remained silent on the issue of his succession. Putin has also promised to use his fourth term to improve Russians' standard of living. Putin also served as an acting president for one year from 1999-2000. He was Russian prime minister for four years from 2008-2012.