The Constitution, the successor and work style. Exclusive interview with Vladimir Putin

– Hello, Vladimir Vladimirovich

Good day.

20 years ago, you recorded an interview. Now, 20 years later, what I see from this window that happened to Russia during those 20 years?

20 years ago — we are all well aware of this, just prefer not to talk about, and rightly — the country stood at a very dangerous level: the possible collapse, or collapse. The economy was in a serious condition, unemployment is awfully big. 40 percent of citizens lived below the poverty line. Inflation in the early ‘ 90s, in early 2000-ies was measured in tens, and even hundreds of percent. Our reserves amounted to 9.5-12 billion and debt of billion 124-145. It was very hard. And people was very hard. And now is not easy, of course. But a situation where even the military did not pay a cash allowance, and pensions were delayed by months, wages were not paid for years — now, too, there are failures, but nothing like on the scale, of course not.

still, we have not only the situation has changed, the country has virtually become another. We have rebuilt our military, the armed component. Russia took its rightful place in international Affairs.

it seemed to Me that after the demise of the Soviet Union, the disappearance of ideological conflict with the West, there will come a time of General prosperity. And only when I became Director of the FSB and when I started to read the closed material, it became obvious that we very often are not playing fair. At the core of this game is to attempt at least to deter Russia, not allowing it to strengthen from the inside, to keep it in dilapidated condition, to manipulate, to control.

– cutoff Point — that the events in Ukraine?

– No, the events in the Caucasus.

– Can you remember the move a difficult decision that was made here in the Kremlin?

– just to see how many difficult decisions over the years.

– though sometimes You can afford at least sometimes easy to be distracted aboutto otkluchitsa, and one that does not see or hear. Is this even possible?

– First of all, operators of the General staff always there with me, within a few seconds. Still, the heads of state must always be connected. Always, round the clock. It’s just a duty. In this sense, no. Still, over the years I have learned to behave in such a way that when you have a few spare hours, I can do what I like such as sports or reading, listen to music.

– Here in the office, you can get crafts for your grandchildren that they give you? Can they get here call and phone?

– to Call can. They through. Something they give me, I have, but not in the office, but, say, in the break room.

– are Often able to talk to them or very rarely?

– Rare. But I communicate with them, of course.

We every time are with you in this office, we see you go out that door, it’s a secret some room?

– No, there is a dining room and recreation room. And another office, where I work with the documents.

– And you can see what’s inside?

Yes, please. But I warn you, I didn’t cook anything there.

– working atmosphere… your Coat here.

– Portrait of my father, he served in Sevastopol, the Navy, the underwater. But it is a small office where I work with the documents. You are here probably the first one to see it. The Cabinet in the mind, where I am working meetings. And then basically work with the documents. I sometimes finish quite late.

how many?

– At half past one, to two nights.

– Often sleeping here?


– And you ascetic? You are an ascetic life conduct?

– If it is paraded, this asceticism, I don’t think this is an example to follow, but it is exactly what you need to navigate the representatives of the authorities of any level need to understand where they live, they must proceed from the fact that hundreds of thousands of people in our country live very modestly. And for the officials who are supposed to serve people, to stick out obscenely flaunting their wealth.

– In your opinion, the political system of the country, which is now, as I understand it, reformed, including the proposed amendments to the Constitution , how it is sustainable?

We have more work to do. The political system of the country needs to have a lot of support points, it should not only rely on the head of state. It should develop along with society, along with government. That is why, incidentally, I recently suggested amendments to the Constitution.

– Can you talk about what kind of consolidation already achieved, so that it reached not podrastali?

– I don’t want to think in those terms, that someone will deliberately to destabilize our political system, though it should definitely have some security, guarantee of self-preservation. We all need to think hard to ensure the system was sustainable, both internal and external shocks.

– Imagine that the Makron, Merkel, trump somewhere to go and delve into some details, it is very difficult. You’re 20 years doing it. Come to places like this. Why are you doing this?

– I believe that nothing is more important than working with people. If a person comes to public service, he comes to serve the state. And what is the state? This people first. It is equally important to work with a specific person, if it can be done. Because there is a feeling of confidence that makes the state as a whole. I feel in the environment of ordinary people, is very comfortable. This is to some extent my environment because I come from a very simple working class family, and despite the fact that quite a long time are at different positions, the highest in the state, yet when I’m in that environment, feel them home.

Often hear the accusation that you almost never punish the guilty.

– everyone has their own style, I got mine.

– a Significant problem for society – corruption. You at the press conference said that sometimes even do not know what to do with it. Removed some because they were involved in obscure cases, too, put the other begins, but this need something to do, what to do?

– the Number of anti-corruption cases, which is increased, suggests that they are not something to become more, the detection rate was better. Have a question about the level of this corruption. We do everything we can to reduce it to a minimum.

– You first, of course, on the world stage began quite tough to say about the importance of national interests.

– You know, there was a period when Russia, as it is sad to say, could not assert its national interests. And what we started to do this since the beginning of 2000-ies, I am sure, it is a) unusual, b) prohibitive and does not meet the world practice. We started talking about our national interests. It’s part of my job, among other things, to protect the interests of our country and our citizens. And the protection of national interests, in particular, involves finding an acceptable compromise for our partners, I have always believed, and believe.

– In Russia all is already accustomed to the fact that every year we had a major sporting events. Great sporting legacy — whether it is loaded, if Yes, how?

I’m sure that it can be effectively used. It is important not only tangible heritage, is important not only the stadiums, tracks for skiing, and so forth, there should be more cultural and sports events that are designed to unite the country, the people, the Nations, not divide them.

– sometimes Rabid criticism that you hear is not offensive to you?

– No, I have got used to it. It is inevitable, that is the law of development of anywow companies. There are always people who think differently than you. We the people have a very good expression: lays gently but firmly puts to bed. This, I think, quite our style.

– Crimea is one of the key events of the 20th anniversary, according to some standards do key. But gained Crimea and lost Ukraine almost. A quarrel of this magnitude worth it?

– first, Crimea has always been ours. Even from a legal point of view. Secondly, we have not purchased. The people living in Crimea decided to reunite with Russia. And it is the highest degree of manifestation of democracy — I want to remind all interested observers. And if so, then this must just what? Agree. And treat this decision with respect. And finally, third: we do not quarrel with the Ukraine, we have separated the views of those who are in power in Ukraine. Ukraine and the Ukrainian people as has been our fraternal people, will remain for centuries.

Sooner or later here in the Kremlin will come, whoever he was, the new President of Ukraine, as it used to be taken for granted?

– I think it is inevitable. Of course, it will happen. The question is — when? But we’ll wait.

– Zelensky until at least a crude statements does not, however, we heard a very unfortunate statement about the Second world war.

– to Minimize the importance of what has been done by the Ukrainian people during the great Patriotic war, and this was made acting President of the country, is causing serious moral wound to all who cherish the heroic past of the Ukrainian people.

You now where are you going, if not a secret?

I’m going now, if I may be Frank, more in one Cabinet. A little more work to do.

– in short, in a few words for you is that country?

– Fatherland – Russia. It is our people, our people, our history, our culture, our achievements, which we are all proud of. And our children, and future. One thing was not done in previous centuries and decades, we, based on this, should always look forward. And then we will be successful.

– Mr President, it so happened that we last met on 23 February, the defender of the Fatherland Day. Difficult, of course, months we have experienced. Today Is The Day Of Russia. Here, in your opinion, at this stage, managed to defend the Fatherland?

– of Course. The number of cases of coronavirus we occupy, in my opinion, third place, and the number of victims, unfortunately, I offer my condolences to all who lost their loved ones, this is one of the lowest in the world. Therefore, without any doubt, in General, we managed to fulfil the task we have set for ourselves – to protect citizens of Russia from this infection.

Soon we have a very important and large political events. For the first time in almost 30 years to the Constitution can be made to very significant changes. Given the experience that we got several months of a pandemic, do you think the relevance of the changes was even higher?

Yes, that’s right. The current Constitution was adopted in the special period, in conditions of acute political crisis, when the tanks fired on the Parliament in Moscow were clashes with the victims. Today, thank God, stable political situation. But there are other things associated with our sovereignty. When you create the Soviet Union in the contract was written the right output, and because there was an established procedure, the question arises: if one or the other Republic became part of the Soviet Union, but was in my Luggage a huge number of Russian lands, the tradition of Russian historical territories, and then suddenly decided to secede from this Union, but then went with what came. And not dragged to a gift from the Russian people. After all, none of this was spelled out. I am absolutely convinced that we’re right to accept, wherthe VCI to the current Constitution.

– One of the amendments made by the deputies, implies that you will have the opportunity to run for another term.

– You know, I will tell absolutely frankly. If it is not, two years later, I know that from experience already, instead of the normal smooth operation on many levels of government will begin roving eyes in search of possible successors. We have to work and not to look for successors.

– You are now some kind of decision was made?

– I haven’t decided yet. I do not exclude the possibility, if this occurs in the Constitution, is to run. View.