The rise of nationalist groups is a very real threat to the future of the Putin regime (photo: dpa)

An uncertain future for Russia's President Vladimir Putin

With one year already under his belt, and despite his rousing attempts to muster support with his emphasis on patriotism, Vladimir Putin faces a rocky ride during his presidential term. The next five years could see violent protests and uprisings sweeping through Russia’s outlying provinces as its economy falters. And then there is the question of whether or not Mr Putin – once synonymous with a resurgent Russia – can hang on to his increasingly precarious position, or whether a credible liberal opposition, or more worryingly, a die-hard nationalistic opposition, might vie for his position.

PATRIOTISM is a key feature in Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s third (non-consecutive) term...

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Professor Stefan Hedlund
The liberals may gain a firm hold on the Duma, but only if they succeed in presenting a credible and likable leader with a positive agenda. If they do not, then there will be an open field for others in opposition that range from communists and nationalists to monarchists and outright fascists
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