Vladimir Putin illustration by Ingram Pinn

Vladimir Putin commenced his second term as president of Russia in May 2012, having already served in the role between 2000 and 2008.

A former KGB agent in East Germany from 1985 to 1990, he began his political career in Moscow in 1996, eventually including two stints as prime minister - 1999 to 2000 and 2008 to 2012.

Cashflow and the Kremlin

Critics of VTB, Russia’s second biggest bank, say only deep ties to Putin have helped it fend off a deeper crisis

The influence of a war photograph

Notebook: What Omran Daqneesh’s family needs is a Syrian ceasefire

Russia and Iran join hands on Syria

Moscow and Tehran take advantage of American mis-steps in the Middle East, writes David Gardner

Vladimir Putin

Russia opts for low-key 25th birthday

Leadership absent from August coup commemoration

Putin blasts Ukraine tensions

Moscow accuses Kiev of armed incursion in Crimea

Putin aide Volodin faces electoral test

Volodin tasked with stemming sense of political disenfranchisement

Ukraine’s former PM makes sanctions plea

Arseny Yatseniuk asks Nato to provide ‘defensive weapons’ to Kiev

Russia’s traditions power its innovators

The livewires of Moscow and St Petersburg rely on age-old ploys to make a living

Putin reshapes his inner circle

A wave of younger, loyal officials does not necessarily spell change

Putin drops long-time ally from key post

President replaces chief of staff in anticipation of testing election

Russia’s risky hand in Ukraine conflict

West should make clear aggression is not in Putin’s interest

Putin accuses Kiev of armed Crimea incursion

Russian president pulls out of peace talks on eastern Ukraine

Ties with Turkey intact, says Nato

Alliance issues assurance after Erdogan and Putin patch up relations

Diplomatic dilemma in dealing with Turkey

The EU and US may have more leverage with Erdogan than assumed

Putin and Erdogan vow to restore links

Some in west fear Nato ally could be drawn into Moscow’s orbit

Russia dreams of Turkey pivoting east

Moscow is the main beneficiary of Erdogan’s countercoup, writes Lilia Shevtsova

The global democratic recession

Democracy is in retreat around the world — for now

Russia banned from Rio Paralympic Games

IPC criticises Russian government over state-backed doping

Turkey purge reaches beyond coup plotters

Erdogan is squandering the chance to forge a new national consensus

Rio 2016: The high price of Olympic glory

A brittle global economy means many cities can no longer afford to stage the ‘greatest show on earth’

Trump urges Russia to find Clinton emails

Hacking remarks revive scrutiny of Republican’s attitude to Moscow

Putin is the model of economic sobriety

His strategy is all defence and no offence, bringing stability but not growth, writes Ruchir Sharma

Hacking Cyber

A dangerous new phase in cyber aggression

The issue of transatlantic security is more important than ever

Putin would favour President Trump

Regardless of Russian hacking claims, his policies will delight Moscow, writes Gideon Rachman

James Ferguson

Turkey’s fate lies in Erdogan’s hands

His priority is not Isis but the Gulenists and Kurdish insurgents, writes David Gardner

IOC explores banning Russia from Rio games

Governing body delays final decision after doping allegations

Putin says to the world: you are as bad

The Kremlin falls back on tropes essential to the president’s power, writes Peter Pomerantsev

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 29, 2016: A woman uses a mobile phone to take a picture outside the Turkish embassy in Moscow where people are laying flowers for victims of 28 June 2016 Istanbul Airport terrorist attack. Artyom Korotayev/TASS (Photo by Artyom Korotayev\TASS via Getty Images)

Russian telecoms groups fight terror law

Compliance costs threaten to bankrupt industry, companies warn

Feedback – the best qualities for Brexit

Your contenders include Obama, Putin, Kamall and David Miliband

Russia seeks to overturn EBRD lending ban

Moscow economy minister warns of ‘legal steps’ to challenge ruling

Obama maintains international popularity

Perceptions of US strong in Pew poll, but confidence low in Trump

Russia and Turkey seek to repair ties

Kremlin lifts prospects of ending sanctions after downing of jet

Turkey seeks an escape from isolation

There is a welcome hint of pragmatism in efforts to mend fences

Turkey apologises to Putin for downing jet

Erdogan calls for restoration of relations between two nations

Russia tightens terror law ahead of poll

Security agencies to be given greater access to emails

Hope grows for a political solution for Syria

President Assad vaingloriously promises to recover every inch of Syria — but him and whose army?

Russia’s athletes face extended ban

Wada report could call for curbs beyond track and field

EU values more important than economics

Many emerging countries have shunned Europe and chosen a finance-based US-style model of capitalism

Renzi lifts spirits at Russia’s ‘Davos’

Presence of Italian leader seen as a sign of improved relations with EU

Russian athletes out of the Olympics

The IAAF decision to maintain a suspension is harsh but necessary