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You're reading: Russia’s Putin promises change, warns of new crisis
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Putin, who ruled Russia since 2000 as both president and prime minister, looks set to win the March election but is facing a growing wave of public discontent after a contested parliamentary vote last month.

His critics liken the 59-year-old prime minister, who has dominated politics in both positions and has no serious rivals in the forthcoming vote, to Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev who presided over a period of stagnation in 1970s.

"In the modern world stability is an asset which can only be earned by hard work, by showing openness to change and readiness for thought-out, calculated reforms," Putin wrote in the pro-government daily Izvestia on Monday, adding that stability "has nothing in common with stagnation".

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