Russian president Vladimir Putin attends a meeting on Thursday to prepare amendments to the Russian constitution. Photograph: Michael Klimentyev/Sputnik/EPA

As State Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin gathered senior members of parliament together to discuss Vladimir Putin’s newly-announced plans to amend the(...)

Vladimir Putin  and his wife, Lyudmila, photographed in 2012. Photograph: Aleksey Nikolskyi/RIA Novosti/Reuters

Vladimir Putin has pulled off one of his most audacious pieces of stagecraft, attending a ballet with his rarely seen wife and then emerging smiling a(...)