Putin: Ever-changing and powerful leader
Updated: 2014-05-20 07:52
Vladimir Putin has cultivated a strongman image and is a cultural icon in Russia. And he always looks radiant and energetic when he appears in public. While Putin's actions are sometimes criticized at home and abroad, he remains wildly popular in Russia, with an 85 percent approval rating, a six-year high, conducted by the All-Russian Centre for the Study of Public Opinion (VTsIOM) earlier this month.
Putin has been the president of Russia since May 7, 2012. He previously served as President from 2000 to 2008, and as prime minister of Russia from 1999 to 2000 and again from 2008 to 2012.
Then Russian Prime Minister Putin swims the butterfly during his vacation outside the town of Kyzyl in southern Siberia, on Aug 3, 2009. [Photo/news.ifeng.com]