Russian President Vladimir Putin (file photo) (ITAR-TASS)
PRAGUE, October 25, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin said today he expects to retain political influence when his second term in office expires in 2008.
Under the Russian constitution, Putin is prohibited from seeking a third term.
Putin made his comments during a live televised question-and-answer session with the Russian public.
President Putin is mulling his political future (epa)
THE 2008 QUESTION: President Vladimir Putin's second term of office ends in the spring of 2008. Since the Russian Constitution bars him from seeking a third consecutive term, this event threatens to present a crisis in a country that has a history of managed power transitions. Already, Russian politics are dominated by the ominous 2008 question. RFE/RL's Washington office hosted a briefing to discuss the prospects of Putin seeking a third term. The featured speakers were RFE/RL Communications Director Don Jensen and political scientist Peter Reddaway of George Washington University.