JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin builds a Presidential Administration fit for stagnation” – bne Intellinews/Mark Galeotti of the Institute of International Relations Prague

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“[Judging from Presidential Administration personnel decisions, Putin] considers [that] … no change in direction is needed. The Presidential Administration is undoubtedly the most powerful institution in Russia. … [A]s Putin continued … ripping away … autonomy and authority of any bodies which could challenge his hyper-presidential power, he soon was forced to come to terms with the basic reality of modern, complex states: they need institutions to provide … guiding impulses … run[ing] along … bureaucratic nerves and sinews.  … the Presidential Administration became the chancellery, audit committee, enforcer and gatekeeper …. * * * … [T]hese boyars are not close to the president because of their important jobs, but hold those positions because of their proximity to the boss. …”

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