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TOPIC: russian president

FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

Will Putin's Quiet Bodyguard Replace Him As Russian President?

Alexei Dyumin, a former bodyguard of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has been touted as a likely successor to the man he once protected. Russian independent news outlet Important Stories takes a closer look at a man who prefers to keep a low profile.

MOSCOW — To say that Alexei Dyumin has had quite a career rise would be putting it mildly. The former bodyguard of Vladimir Putin is now governor of the region of Tula in west Russia, south of Moscow. Recently, he was mentioned as a possible new Russian Defense Minister, and even as a successor to Putin.

How exactly Dyumin transitioned from a military unit member to the security guard of some of the highest-ranking state officials remains a mystery.

So who is Alexei Dyumin? That's a tricky question to answer.

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Will Putin's ICC Arrest Warrant Reignite The Nuclear Threat? One Plain Reason Not To Worry

The war crimes arrest warrant issued by the Hague puts the pressure on the Russian president. Would that prompt him to follow through on his past threats to use nuclear weapons? An extensive investigation by independent Russian publication Project.Media into Putin's life finds that he has other priorities closer to home.

Over his 23 years in power, Vladimir Putin has gone from a young liberal politician to an authoritarian dictator.

Before becoming president, Putin was a mediocre KGB officer who'd earned him the nickname "Moth" and worked with St. Petersburg thugs on low-level missions. There was no outward sign that he would evolve into the image of a global ideological leader for Russians, and enemy No. 1 of the civilized world.

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His failure to conquer Ukraine and open conflict with the West have prompted him to repeatedly make reference to Russia's nuclear arsenal. Fears and threats of the nuclear option may be revived after Friday's decision by the International Criminal Court (ICC) to issue an arrest warrant for the Russian President for alleged war crimes, including claims of the unlawful deportation of children from Ukraine to Russia.

Moscow has denied the accusations, and denounced the warrants as "outrageous." While some debate whether Putin can actually be arrested, there is also the question of what the Kremlin would do in response. How obsessed is Putin in punishing the West? How far could a cornered Putin go?

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Defiance And Resilience, A Year Of Living Dangerously In Kyiv

One year after the Russian invasion, Kyiv has become an international symbol of resistance, also in the way that ordinary life continues, despite air raids and bomb blasts.

KYIV — Bombs at breakfast, jacuzzi at noon. Like many residents of Kyiv, Alina Sugoniako's daily life at the end of January is anything but normal. That Thursday, at dawn, the Russian army fired about 20 missiles onto the Ukrainian capital. The young woman, five months pregnant, takes refuge between the walls of the corridor of her small apartment with her husband, Dmytro.

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They waited there for nearly an hour, their eyes glued to their phones, looking for information on the impact points of the bombs. Then the news falls: one dead and two wounded in the south of the city. The air raid alert faded into the icy sky, and life could try to resume its course.

The couple, who had planned to spend a few hours relaxing in a downtown spa, decided to keep to their schedule.

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Goodbye Mr. Perestroika: World's Front Pages Bid Adieu To Mikhail Gorbachev

International newspapers pay homage to the last of the USSR leaders.

Mikhail Gorbachev, the eighth and final leader of the Soviet Union, died Tuesday from a long illness at the Moscow Central Clinical Hospital in Moscow, at age 91. His six years at the head of the USSR, from 1985 to 1991, were notably marked by his role in bringing the Cold War to an end, changing the course of world history.

Born in 1931 in a poor peasant family of Russian and Ukrainian heritage in Privolnoye, Gorbachev grew up in the aftermath of the Soviet famine of 1932–1933 and under the rule of Joseph Stalin. After rising through the ranks of the Communist party, Gorbachev’s reforms ushered in a period of perestroika (“restructuring”) and glasnost (“openness”), contributing to the mostly peaceful end to the Cold War and eventually, the fall of the USSR.

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