President Putin is expected to gain lifelong immunity from prosecution for any alleged crimes committed before, during and after his time in office under a proposed law to be discussed by Russia’s rubber-stamp parliament.
The move is being seen as a Kremlin plan to ensure his personal safety in the event that he eventually relinquishes power. This week Mr Putin, 68, began steps to push through legislation that would allow him to become a senator for life when or if he steps down as president. Recent amendments to the constitution mean that Mr Putin, who will celebrate 21 years in power on New Year’s Eve, can remain in the Kremlin as the Russian leader until 2036, when he will be 83.
Under Russian law