Following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s annual address to Federal Assembly, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced the resignation of his government on January 15. Putin has reportedly accepted the resignation and has asked the ministers to function as a caretaker government.
The announcement comes after Putin suggested sweeping changes in the constitution that would have shifted the power from the presidency to Parliament and Prime Minister. Medvedev reportedly met Putin and discussed the address where the latter had suggested the changes. According to media reports, Putin plans to create a ‘Deputy Secretary of Russia’s Security Council’ position and offer it to Medvedev.
Earlier in December, Putin had dropped a hint about his political future post-2024 at a marathon conference where he was in favour of removing the word ‘successive’ from tenure length. As per the Russian Constitution, a President can stay for six years with one successive re-election, which makes it 12 years at stretch.
In 2008, Putin handed over the presidency to his ally Dmitry Medvedev and got back in 2012. Speculations were rife that the Russian President might use the same tactic to return to power but Putin’s hint said otherwise. At the annual conference, Putin said that he had served two successive terms and had the constitutional right to return to the post of the president but this could be “possibly” removed due to objections from political scientists and activists.