Putin warms to term limits

April 11, 2012 at 9:46 AM
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MOSCOW, April 11 (UPI) -- Russian President-elect Vladimir Putin said it was "reasonable" to change the constitution to impose a two-term limit on the presidency.

Putin won a presidential election this year, setting the stage for his third non-consecutive term in office. The president-elect, in his final report to the State Duma as prime minister, said tightening term limit rules was something he would consider.

"As for replacing the limiting phrase 'two consecutive terms' with 'two terms' in the constitution, I think this is reasonable, it is something that could be thought over together with all the factions," he was quoted by Russia's state-run news agency RIA Novosti as saying.

The constitution prohibits an individual holding the office of president for more than two consecutive terms. Putin served two terms starting in 2000 and became prime minister in 2008.

Election monitors in December suggested State Duma elections were skewed in favor of Putin's United Russia party. Similar concerns were expressed in a March election that secured a Putin's third term in office.

Russia's Central Election Commission announced Wednesday it wasn't overturning the results of a mayoral election in the southern city of Astrakhan. Opposition leader Oleg Shein has been staging a hunger strike to demonstrate against voting irregularities since losing a March 4 election.

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