Friday, 27 May 2022

How powerful is Putin? Three definitive reasons to be worried – analysis

Vladimir Putin says ‘we are not threatening anybody’

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Mr Putin’s leadership is widely praised within Russia for restoring the country back as a global superpower following the dissolution of the Soviet Union. With the 69-year-old showing no signs of losing grip on his control of Russia, Express.co.uk takes a look at three reasons which illustrate just how powerful he really is.

1.) He could remain President for another 14 years

In July 2020, Russia passed a series of controversial national reforms that would allow Mr Putin to remain as President until 2036.

Russia’s electoral commission revealed 77.9 percent of people voted for the reform package, which will reset Mr Putin’s term limits to zero in 2024.

Consequently, he could yet serve two further six-year terms, having ruled as President since 2000.

However, there was no independent scrutiny of the seven-day vote, and copies of the new constitution appeared in bookshops during the week voting took place.

At the time, top Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny described the results as a “big lie” which did not reflect real public opinion in the country.

Nonetheless, the path is now clear for Mr Putin to become the longest-serving leader in Russian history, with Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin the only person who has held power for longer – 29 years.

2.) Significant military strength

As Kremlin leader, Mr Putin is in control of one of the world’s most powerful militaries.

With regards to nuclear warheads, Russia is thought to own the largest global arsenal, with 6,257 – October 2021 estimation.

For context, that’s more than 600 greater than the next highest ranked nation – the US – and 18 times larger than China who has the third biggest supply in the world.

The Global Firepower PowerIndex is a statistics-based website which tracks defence-related information of 140 nations around the world

According to its 2022 rankings, Russia has the second most powerful military of any country across all four corners of the globe.

DON’T MISS: 
‘This is what happens’ EU shamed as eurozone lags behind UK [ANALYSIS]
Security chief warns of Putin’s ‘dangerous’ actions  [INSIGHT]
 Liz Truss facing ‘COLLAPSED’ United Kingdom [EXPLAINED]

Here, it earned a score of 0.050 – the closer the number is to 0.0000, the more dominant the military.

This time the US and Russia traded positions with the former placed as having the strongest global military strength.

Indeed, Russia’s deployment of its armed forces along the border it shares with Ukraine has raised anxiety levels in the West that the country could invade at a moment’s notice, having amassed 100,000 soldiers at various locations.

Nearly eight years ago, Russia annexed the southern Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea and is accused of backing separatists who captured large swathes of eastern Ukraine.

The rebels have fought the Ukrainian military ever since in a conflict that has claimed more than 14,000 lives.

3.) Opponents of Mr Putin have been quickly dismissed

Alexei Navalny was arrested immediately, in January 2021, after he had returned to Russia from Berlin.

He has remained jailed ever since in poor health on a charge relating to an embezzlement case that dates back to 2014.

Mr Navalny is a public critic of Mr Putin who in the past has accused the incumbent President’s party of being full of “crooks and thieves”.

In August 2020, he narrowly survived a Novichok nerve agent attack, which Western Governments later blamed squarely on Mr Putin’s Federal Security Service (FSB).

Novichok – a Russian weapons-grade toxin – was also used to poison Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in England in 2018.

Russian state agents were blamed for that too. The Skripals survived, but a local woman died.

Mr Putin denied any links to those and other attacks on prominent political opponents.

Source: Read Full Article

Best News