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Duma passes in first reading bill allowing Putin to run for president again

MOSCOW, December 23. /TASS/. The State Duma passed in the first reading a draft legislation to implement a constitutional amendment which will allow incumbent Russian President Vladimir Putin to run for presidency again at a plenary session on Wednesday.

The document was introduced to the State Duma by lawmakers Pavel Krasheninnikov and Olga Savastianova as well as by Federation Council member Andrey Klishas. According to one of the new provisions of the Russian Constitution, the limitation on the number of terms the same person may serve as the President of the Russian Federation is applied to the incumbent head of state without taking into account his previous presidential terms. Thus, this norm will allow the current head of state to serve two presidential terms.

In order to develop new constitutional provisions, the draft legislation also introduces additional requirements to presidential candidates. Thus, it is established that a presidential candidate should be a citizen of the Russian Federation no younger than 35 years of age who has permanently resided in the Russian Federation for no less than 25 years and who does not have and did not have earlier a citizenship of a foreign state nor a residence permit. The requirement of an absence of a foreign citizenship will not apply to those Russian citizens "who earlier had a citizenship of a country which was accepted or part of which was accepted in the Russian Federation in accordance with the federal constitutional law." The document also stipulates that a chairman of the Central Election Commission of the Russian Federation should be at least 30 years of age.