President Vladimir Putin holds his sixth annual meeting with journalists in the Kremlin today. The big press conference started at 12:00 Moscow time. Russia’s major TV and radio channels are broadcasting the conference live. Like all previous conferences, the current one takes place in the Round Hall of the 14th building in the Kremlin. The hall houses 800 people. However, the current meeting has a record number of applications made by Russian and foreign journalists – 1,232 people in total. Organizers of the meeting prepared extra seats for reporters on the balcony of the hall.
It took Putin almost 3.5 hours to answer more than 100 questions last year.
The international press conference does not have a central theme. It is expected that it will be of general character: Putin will answer questions about Russia’s home and foreign policies. However, experts believe that the statements, which Putin is going to make during the current press conference, will become the draft of his ‘political will.’
Putin’s previous conferences for journalists were mainly devoted to questions of economy and foreign policy. This time everyone expects a political will from Putin, a sensational statement, which the president is thought to make to the world before his term in the office expires next year. Specialists believe that Putin will dot all i’s in terms of internal political affairs in Russia. Questions about Putin’s successor will also be answered, of course.
Foreign journalists are going to ask Putin about the assassination of former FSB agent, Alexander Litvinenko, and touch upon other questions, which do not evoke pleasant feelings with the Russian administration.
U.S. Justice Department is acting behind the scenes to have Assange extradicted from the Ecuadorean Embassy in London, and prosecuted in the U.S.