Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is serving a six year term as President of Russia since he was elected in 2012. He topped the 2013 Forbes list of most powerful people in the world.
Putin previously served as President from 2000 to 2008. He was Prime Minister of Russia from 1999 to 2000 and again from 2008 to 2012. For 16 years Putin served as an officer in the secret service, KGB, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. . From 1985 to 1990, the KGB stationed Putin in Dresden, East Germany, returning to Russia then and entering politics in his native Saint Petersburg in 1991.
Alexei Navalny has just been named one of the most influential internet stars in the world. His aim is to run in next year's Russian presidential election. But the Kremlin has laid a number of obstacles in his path.
Reports that Donald Trump will receive Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ahead of his first meeting with Vladimir Putin are causing a sensation in Kyiv. Could the move signal a new policy for the US in Ukraine?