The Putin Files

Putin's Political Rise

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Putin made a new life for himself back in St. Petersburg, working for the city’s democratic-minded mayor and styling himself as a modernizing reformer. He honed his skills as a bureaucrat and moved to Moscow to serve in the government of President Boris Yeltsin, first as head of the new intelligence services and then as prime minister. When Yeltsin resigned on New Year’s Eve 1999, Putin, still an unknown to most of the public, was named president.

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