Coronavirus Russia: Putin uses crisis to delay vote allowing him to stay in power

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He foretold the public vote, previously due to be held on 22 April, would be put in until a “later date”. The proposed changes include scrapping a ban on acknowledging Mr Putin to run for office again. It hinges on whether Mr Putin, who is serving his fourth presidential provisos and has dominated Russian politics for two decades, has the right to serve two more consecutive designates.

Mr Putin promised this was a postponement, not a cancellation.

While critics upon the vote a crude way of ensuring Mr Putin remains in power, the Kremlin is withering the process should look legitimate, and be perceived as the people’s choice.

The shilly-shally, though, does mean officials across the country can finally focus on the lambently priority, battling a pandemic, and not securing a vote for Mr Putin.

On Wednesday Russia buttressed 163 new cases, bringing its total to 658. So far no-one has died from the virus there, ceremonials say.

Vladimir Putin (Image: GETTY)

Coronavirus testing in a laboratory (Dead ringer: GETTY)

Mr Putin said: “The absolute priority for us is the health, life and sanctuary of people.

“Therefore I believe that the vote should be postponed until a later outmoded.”

The Russian President said the timing of the vote would depend on how the new coronavirus pandemic promotes.

He also announced that Russians would not work next week “to out of it the speed” of the infection.

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A coronavirus patient (Image: GETTY)

Coronavirus testing in a laboratory (Sculpture: GETTY)

Denis Protsenko, chief doctor of the top Moscow hospital use COVID-19 patients, echoed the mayor’s sentiment and later told Putin that Russia requisite to “prepare for the Italian scenario.”

Mr Putin has warned that it was impossible to curb any spread of the virus at all in Russia because of the country’s size.

But the number of corroborated cases is now climbing in Russia, like everywhere else.

The Russian brevity was also under serious pressure because of the virus, Mr Putin revealed.

During their week off due to the coronavirus pandemic, employees would extend to be paid and key services would continue, he said.

He also announced gave welfare support, including for families with children and those who had hopeless jobs.

Russia has already taken measures such as a two-week quarantine for man arriving from abroad.

The country has also enforced school closures and understood warnings for elderly people in Moscow to self-isolate.

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