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Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold his seventh and final annual
Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold his seventh and final annual press conference as president on February 14, ahead of the March 2 presidential elections, the Kremlin press service said.

Under the Constitution, Putin, who is reaching the end of his second term as president, is barred from seeking office for a third time. He will cede his presidential powers to his eventual successor, widely-expected to be current First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, in May.

The press conference will start at 12 a.m. Moscow time (9 a.m. GMT).

No special topics have been selected, but in recent years, Putin has answered questions related to Russia's domestic and foreign policies, as well as fielding queries of a more personal nature.

Putin held his first large news conference in the run up to a G8 summit in July 2001. Around 400 journalists took part with the president answering 22 questions.

The number of journalists and questions, as well as the length of presidential press conference, has increased every year. Last year, over 1,100 journalists attended the annual event, during which the president answered 66 questions over a three and a half hour period.


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