Vladimir Putin: “People felt it with their hearts and came to create conditions for the development and strengthening of the homeland, Russia”

16:18 18.03.2024 •

Photo: Sputnik Globe

Key points of Vladimir Putin's speech at campaign headquarters.

Presidential candidate and Russia's incumbent head of state Vladimir Putin said he would like to thank citizens of Russia who went to polling stations and voted in the presidential election this weekend.

In a speech he delivered at his campaign headquarters, Putin said that the high voter turnout at this presidential election was the result of Russians realizing how much actually depends on them.

"First of all, I want to thank the citizens of Russia. We are all one team. [I want to thank] all the citizens of Russia who came to the polling stations and voted," Putin said

According to him, the voters sought to help create “political consolidation” that would help Russia to “move forward.”

“People felt it with their hearts and came to create conditions for the development and strengthening of the homeland, Russia,” Putin said.

On Vandalism at Polling Stations

Putin condemned the actions of a number of people who came to polling stations solely to vandalize ballots cast by other voters.

Whereas deciding what to do with your own vote is okay, he explained, trying to interfere with other people’s voting is not.

“This is, at the very least, not democratic,” Putin remarked.

On Navalny’s Death

Referring to the demise of Alexey Navalny who died last month while serving a 19-year sentence in a Russian prison for fraud and extremism, Putin said that his death, while unfortunate, was hardly an extraordinary event.

Noting that there were other instances of convicts dying in Russian prisons, Putin pointed out that the same can be said about the United States as well.

Putin also mentioned that he was willing to go through with a proposed scheme to swap Navalny for an unspecified number of people imprisoned in Western countries, on one condition: that Navalny would never return to Russia afterwards.

On Future Plans

His new presidential term is going to be devoted to achieving the objectives of the special military operation in Ukraine and strengthening Russia’s defense capability and armed forces, Putin said.

"First of all, we need to solve tasks of a special military operation, strengthen defense capabilities, strengthen the armed forces - this is happening, we all see, at a very good pace and with excellent quality," he stated.

All plans for the development of Russia, which were previously announced in the presidential address to the Federal Assembly, will be implemented and the goals will be achieved, Putin added.

He also mentioned that he is in no hurry to form the new government. As Putin pointed out, there are still some two and half months left to do that, as per the Russian legislation.

On Foreign Policy Matters

Vladimir Putin has stated that Russia is ready and willing to negotiate a peaceful resolution of the Ukrainian conflict, but only if Kiev wants to forge cordial, neighborly relations with Russia instead of getting a reprieve to rearm the battered Ukrainian forces.

Putin noted that he was not aware of French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposal for a ceasefire in Ukraine during the Olympics. The Russian head of state remarked that Moscow is ready to consider any proposals, but will act in accordance with its own interests.

When asked whether a full-blown conflict between Russia and NATO is possible, Putin simply replied that he thinks “anything is possible” in the world today.

On Russian Collaborators Who Serve Kiev

During his speech, Vladimir Putin shared his thoughts on the so-called Russian Volunteer Corps (recognized as a terrorist organization in Russia and outlawed in the country), a paramilitary group comprised of Russian nationals who fight in the Ukrainian conflict on the side of the Kiev regime.

Putin compared the group to the so-called army of Andrei Vlasov, a Soviet general who turned traitor and led a Russian collaborationist formation that fought under the Nazi German command in World War II.

“Back then, those people, those traitors and vermin fought on the Nazis’ side,” Putin said. “Today there are similar people who fight on the side of neo-Nazis, of a neo-Nazi regime.”


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