Radio Free never takes money from corporate interests, which ensures our publications are in the interest of people, not profits. Radio Free provides free and open-source tools and resources for anyone to use to help better inform their communities. Learn more and get involved at radiofree.org

Last fall, Russian President Vladimir Putin suddenly began to reveal far-reaching plans for a future that could include the extension of his time in the Kremlin until 2036.

Just as abruptly this spring, the coronavirus forced the postponement of a nationwide vote on those blueprints — and the elaborate May 9 Victory Day celebrations that could have burnished his image.

The pandemic has also compounded economic problems that have hurt Putin’s standing with his fellow Russians and cast a shadow on efforts to choreograph the coming years.

Together with the German Marshall Fund and its Frontlines of Democracy Initiative, RFE/RL experts spoke about the amplified challenges now facing Putin and the Kremlin and the potential consequences for Russia’s future.

The talk featured Steve Gutterman, the editor of RFE/RL’s Russia Desk and the author of The Week In Russia newsletter, as well as Irina Lagunina, the director of special projects for RFE/RL’s Russian Service, and Kiryl Sukhotski, the executive editor for news at Current Time, the Russian-language network led by RFE/RL in cooperation with Voice of America.

The discussion was moderated by Jonathan Katz, a senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund who directs the Frontlines of Democracy Initiative.

(The discussion begins at 3:55)

Citations

[1] The German Marshall Fund of the United States | Strengthening Transatlantic Cooperation ➤ https://www.gmfus.org/[2] Jonathan D. Katz | Strengthening Transatlantic Cooperation ➤ https://www.gmfus.org/profiles/jonathan-d-katz