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Russia: Putin Says He Will Seek Second Term

Moscow, 18 December 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin said today that he will run for re-election next year. Speaking during a question-and-answer television show, Putin confirmed he will seek a second term in office.

"I was planning to do this, to make this announcement, in the next few days since the official campaign has only just begun. I know there are many questions about this issue. My answer is affirmative. Yes, I will run. I repeat, I will soon make an official announcement," Putin said.

Putin also said he is opposed to suggestions that he serve more than two terms in office. Asked whether he supports the idea of serving three or more terms -- which is barred by the constitution -- he said that he "disapproves."

Russia's presidential election has been set for 14 March 2004.