Putin, who served two consecutive four-year terms starting in 2000, became prime minister in 2008 to observe a constitutional limit of two consecutive terms.
Putin continued calling the shots as premier with his longtime ally, Dmitry Medvedev, serving as a placeholder. Medvedev initiated a law that extended the presidential term to six years, and Putin won a third term in 2012 despite major public protests in Moscow against his rule.
Asked Thursday whether he would seek another term in 2018, Putin said that he doesn't exclude that.
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