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Putin’s Annual Address: Nationalization Of Elites And Strengthening Of Russian National Sovereignty

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Putin's Annual Address: Nationalization Of Elites And Strengthening Of Russian National Sovereignty

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On January 15, 2020 Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered his annual state-of-the-nation address to Russian lawmakers in Moscow. During the 2018 adress, Putin revealed 6 high-tech weapons systems (hypersonic weapons) which were developed in order to preserve strategic parity that was being undermined by the US and NATO. In the 2020 adress, Putin proposed several changes to the Russian constitution that are aimed at strengthening the Russian Federation’s national sovereignty.

Among others, the proposals include the following:

  • To guarantee the primacy of the Constitution of the Russian Federation on the territory of Russia over international law and international treaties. Previously, the Russian state followed the principle of the primacy of international law over its national laws.
  • To ban prime ministers, governors and other key officials to have foreign citizenship or residence permit at the constitutional level.
  • To update the requirement for presidential candidates. This should include the residence in Russia for 25 years and the absence of foreign citizenship.
  • To introduce in the Constitution the corresponding status and role of the State Council (an advisory body to the Russian head of state).
  • To increase the responsibility of the Federal Assembly (the two-chamber Parliament) for the formation and activities of the government and entrust the State Duma (the lower house of the Parliament) with the approval of the prime minister. The President will not have the right to reject the approved candidacy.
  • The President should appoint of heads of law enforcement agencies, after consultation with the Federation Council.
  • To strengthen the role of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation. At the request of the president, it should verify the constitutionality of bills and other documents.
  • To allow the Federation Council (the upper house of the Parliament), on the recommendation of the President of Russia, to remove from office judges of the Constitutional and Supreme Courts in response to their misconduct defaming honor and dignity.

Aditionally, Putin noted that there is an opinion that the word “in a row” in limiting two presidential terms can be removed. However, he noted that this is not fundamental.

Following the adress, Central Election Commission Secretary Maya Grishina revealed that the vote on amendments to the Russian Constitution may be held in 2020 already.

If all the amendments to the Constitution are accepted, this will mark a tectonic shift in the Russian internal and foreign policy. The ‘nationalization of elites’ (via the ban on foreign citizenships or residence permits), the primacy of the Constitution over international law and other steps are openly aimed at strengthening the Russian state and its sovereignity in the conditions of the growing instability on the international scene, public and rough violations of international law by key global actors and the increasing confrontation among world powers. This is especially important amid the collapse of the existing system of international relations, including key international security treaties.

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  • bob

    It’ll also be the perfect opportunity for old rubber chops Putin to announce more wiz bangs!

    If so, i do hope this time he gets someone who can do graphics a bit better than that last fantasy show, which lets be perfectly honest was absolutely appalling and amateurish

    • JoeAlpha

      Poor little Bob.. Trying so hard all day to get a few shekels. You look hungry. Didn’t you earn your shekels today, bob? Well, I will be a little generous to you. Here, I reply your comment so they pay you and you get your shekels, now go buy some falafel or hummus to eat, don’t waste your time, you haven’t eaten all day, right?

      • bob

        I’ve had only the finest fair today my friend,washed down with an exquisite white, Gewurztraminer to be exact!

        How about you?

      • What?! I missed bob’s mini-meltdown?! Must be hard, really hard, to keep up with a fake English accent on the interwebs. Just shove a blood sausage wrapped in a matzo into his ear – that ought to kickstart his Jew brain.

    • Tudor Miron

      Harder boby, harder!

  • Daniel Martin

    Now that’s the way you do it if you want to preserve your countries interests above all other things such as “western-humanism” aka NGO:ing and political correctness.

    • Tudor Miron

      It’s just a way to defend the country against hostile actions disguising under nice words like “humanism” etc.

  • Davki

    Pathetic. “Patriotism is the refuge of the last scoundrel”. Who is he afraid of to make such absurd laws?
    Well, he’s going down the same ‘exceptionalist’ path as the US. And he uses constitutional powers for his own short-term political gain. Sadly, Russia is no alternative to the US, then, for Europe.

    • Selbstdenker

      With its track record in ME and this shining to east Asia, US is soon pacing the way down. In Japan the issue with rapes by US soldiers in Okinawa is still on and growing. China does not give a damn shit of US intimdating behavior anymore as it tested its weaponry in Syria, and knows now that it is working. Philipines is also tornung away from US towards China despite the heavy preasure US is applying.
      And with the showcase of Syria and Iraq, where US denied the government their right to their country, and taking their funds hostage to change mindsets, it is a clear sign to the world, what priorities US policy has. It is not the land of the free, but a warmongering state, serving only its own (banks, Hedge fonds, military industrial complex) interests.

    • Tudor Miron

      You wither didn’t understand what he was saying or simply another one of Russia bashers team :)

    • AM Hants

      Darling, without patriotism, then what have you got?

      If you wish to be part of a nation that despises itself, well you only have to look at the US or many EU members. Those who were happy to give up pride in their nation, and now find themselves living in a minority, as everybody else and more, dictate all the rights. Funnily enough, those that focus on ethnic cleansing the Indigenous members of the population, have the strongest voice.

      • Perhaps Davki had a stake in that 80% cut of Russian defense and energy spending racket you mentioned above?

    • goingbrokes

      On the contrary this is an excellent answer to globalism. All countries, including EU and US should follow suit!

  • Enoch

    What is the game here to pull out of international law, this makes no sense unless a wedge issue against the imperialists. Any thoughts?

    • Tudor Miron

      It is just that foreign rules would be secondary to Russian legislation within our territory. Current constitution which was written in US embassy was written for subordinate state. This is not the case anymore and it has to be reflected in constitution.

      • AM Hants

        I remember watching the ‘Unknown Putin’ series and the 1st episode they were stating that the US wrote Russia’s laws and taxes, on the back of the ‘3rd World Agreement’, they got Yeltsin to sign. The US received 80 cents of ever $US of Russian energy and defence weapons sold, with Russia being allowed to keep the other 20 cents. This all changed on 1 January 2004, when Russia started to retain 100 cents of every $US of energy and weapon sales. Which allowed Russia to pay off the $45 billion Soviet Union debt, together with the $16.5 billion Russian Federation debt.

        I did not know that Russia was still endebted to an US based constitution. Seriously in need of tweeking.

      • How very convenient that the Amis would write such a thing into the Yeltsin-era constitution. “All the better to drag your country around by the ear,” as they say.

    • AM Hants

      How many in the UN follow International Law, so why should Russia adhere to it and find herself isolated?

  • EMF-Guy

    “To ban prime ministers, governors and other key officials to have foreign citizenship”

    That’s one a few other countries would be wise to emulate.

    • Gabriel Hollows

      Should have also banned non-slavs from holding government positions.

      • Tudor Miron

        Russia is a multinational country – banning non slavs is nothing other than a path to destroy Russia from within.

        • BMWA1

          This reminds me, I am going to Transbaikal this summer!

          • Kananda

            nice trip

        • goingbrokes

          Exactly, Shoigu is a good example of a non-slav and doing a great job!

  • AM Hants

    Could you imagine if the US, UK (remember Boris was born in New York), or Ukraine banned dual citizenship or residential rights in another nation, law, how that would work with regards their politicians. Also, the 25 year law, which makes it compulsory to have been a Russian citizen with a knowledge of the Yeltsin Era. Nice one. Which all nations took the same path.

  • TomWonacott

    To increase the responsibility of the Federal Assembly (the two-chamber Parliament) for the formation and activities of the government and entrust the State Duma (the lower house of the Parliament) with the approval of the prime minister. The President will not have the right to reject the approved candidacy.

    The article passes this over without explanation. The changes in the responsibility for the Duma to pick the PM allows Putin to essentially continue ruling Russia after his current term expires. Thus, if anyone doubted what Putin was planning to do in 2024, this is an obvious answer. When Medvedev was President, Putin ruled as Prime Minister. This will be the same situation in 2024. No surprise.

    In addition Putin said the constitutional changes need to be approved by a vote of the people. This is entirely laughable.

    the primacy of the Constitution over international law and other steps are openly aimed at strengthening the Russian state

    This is also a joke. Putin relegated international law to the back burner when he illegally invaded and annexed Crimea, illegally invaded Eastern Ukraine, illegally participated in an attempted coup in Montenegro and illegally sent his military to Libya to fight the UN recognized government of Libya (in support of Haftar). Russia has also targeted and bombed hospitals in Syria – also illegal under international law.

  • Kananda

    Each word is bullshit, until he will not shoot the oligarchs!

  • Tudor Miron

    Many don’t realise what started yesterday. This is a huge. What Putin actually declared is a statement that Russia is now ready to fully restore its sovereignty. While military and diplomatic aspects of sovereignty were mostly restored Russia was still under strong influence of US country level elites in terms of economical, social development, cultural and many other aspects. Government consisting mostly of comprador elites (other than foreign affairs and defence which are under direct control of president) – is fired. Those creatures – were actually working against their country and in favor of foreign powers. New prime minister is introduced. We’ll see how it goes from now on.

  • SnowCatzor

    No more duel-citizens and nation hoppers, I’m sure that’ll piss off members of a certain country in particular.