Russia: «I have not decided whether I will run at all» says Putin of 2018 election

SOT, Vladimir Putin, Russian President (Russian): «No, not only have I not decided yet who I will stand against, I have not decided whether I will run at all. Because by law I think the presidential election campaign will be officially announced at the end of November, beginning of December. By that point, I believe that the main contenders will probably come out and state their intentions as well... Еще as their election programmes.» SOT, Vladimir Putin, Russian President (Russian): «You said that they are always going to be. Is there anything permanent in the world? I think nothing is permanent. Everything changes. The fact that some countries, our international partners conduct their own independent foreign policy is entirely natural. When we build relations with one or another state we know this and take this into consideration. And this doesn’t prevent us from developing relationships with them.» Russian President Vladimir Putin said he has not yet decided whether to seek re-election in March 2018, speaking from the Russian Energy Week forum in Moscow on Wednesday. «Not only have I not decided yet who I will stand against, I have not decided whether I will run at all,» said Putin adding that all presidential candidates are expected to announce their decision to run in late November or early December. The conversation then turned to Russia's relations with foreign partners, and Saudi Arabia in particular, given the Saudi king's visit to the Russian capital the same day. When asked whether he was concerned that Saudi Arabia, as a US ally, was using Russia to its advantage, the Russian president stated that the nature of relations between Saudi Arabia and the US does not stop Russia from developing bilaterial relations. «Our most significant advantage is that we never double-deal. We are always honest with our partners. We openly state our position,» said Putin, before elaborating further, «what makes it our advantage is that we're predictable compared with many other countries. That’s what accounts for Russia’s attractiveness for foreign partners, not our military potential.»
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