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Merkel Putin AP.jpg

Merkel Putin AP.jpg

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, welcomes President of Russia Vladimir Putin, left, at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, June 1, 2012. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

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Turkey Russia.JPEG-0adff.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin stands for a minute of silence at the mausoleum of modern Turkey's founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in Ankara, Turkey, Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Russia Putin.JPEG-04e12.jpg

Russia Putin.JPEG-04e12.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with members of the All-Russia Popular Front in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Alexei Druzhinin, Presidential Press Service)

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11162014_putin8201.jpg

The Kremlin unveiled its latest weapon to combat the West's "information war" on President Vladimir Putin with the launch of Sputnik — a lavishly funded, international media outlet whose advent heralds a silencing of dissent and criticism in Russia. (AP Photo/Alain Jocard, Pool)

2014 11 12 12 50 51

2014 11 12 12 50 51

U.S. President Bush, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, wearing traditional Chilean ponchos, are seen prior to the leaders' group photo at the 2004 APEC Summit in Santiago, Chile, Sunday, Nov. 21, 2004. (AP Photo/ITAR-TASS, Presidential Press Service)

2014 11 12 12 40 20

2014 11 12 12 40 20

Russian President Vladimir Putin talks with President Bush as they make their way to a family photo session during the APEC leaders summit in Shanghai, China on Sunday Oct. 21, 2001. (AP Photo/CP, Fred Chartrand)

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11112014_apec-china-obama-russia-38201.jpg

President Obama joins Philippine President Benigno Aquino III (second right), Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit Tuesday in Beijing. (Associated Press)

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11112014_apec-china-russia-us-28201.jpg

upper hand: Russian President Vladimir Putin (center) signed a natural gas agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping, but President Obama is still working on a deal. (RIA Novosti via Associated Press)

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APEC China Russia US.JPEG-03ca8.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and U.S. President Barack Obama, center, talk on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014 in Beijing. (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Presidential Press Service)

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20141024-national-news-cover.jpg

National Edition News cover for October 24, 2014 - Aggressive Putin puts U.S. on the defense: Russia Federation's President Vladimir Putin attends the 10th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Milan, Italy, Friday, Oct. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

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Putin.jpg

Russian President, Vladimir Putin pumping gas.

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10222014_ap2924634527858201.jpg

currency: Consumer goods prices and inflation are at all-time highs in Russia, but the country's citizens are hesitant to blame their lot on President Vladimir Putin. Some analysts say such unwillingness may be due to fear of state-sponsored persecution. (Associated Press)

Russia Ukraine Putin.JPEG-04fb4.jpg

Russia Ukraine Putin.JPEG-04fb4.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin listens during a cabinet meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Oct. 13, 2014. Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered thousands of his country's troops who were posted near the Ukrainian border to return to their permanent bases. A Kremlin spokesman said Putin had ordered approximately 17,600 troops to return home from the southern region of Rostov. The withdrawal may be a sign of goodwill ahead of Putin's trip to Milan on Thursday, where he is set to meet with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and European Union leaders.(AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Alexei Druzhinin, Presidential Press Service)

Belarus Russia CIS Summit.JPEG-0b321.jpg

Belarus Russia CIS Summit.JPEG-0b321.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks to the leaders of ex-Soviet states during a meeting in Minsk, Belarus, Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. Putin lashed out at the European Union for “not considering it necessary to discuss the risks” of political and economic integration with post-Soviet countries. Ukraine’s decision to sign an association agreement with the European Union in September provoked complaints from the Kremlin that the deal would hurt Russia’s economy. (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Alexei Nikolsky, Presidential Press Service)

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Russia black sea fleet.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin inspects the nation's Black Sea fleet at the Crimean port of Sevastopol on May 9, 2014. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

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9_152014_tajikistan-putin-28201.jpg

Despite popular support for a visa regime with former Soviet republics, Russian President Vladimir Putin has opposed such a move, saying "A visa regime would mean that we are pushing former Soviet republics away, but we need to bring them closer." (Associated Press)

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2b41d5f6c72164235f0f6a70670033f6.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, speaks during his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, as Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov listens Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014. Putin takes part in the two-day summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which brings together Russia, China and four former Soviet republics in Central Asia. (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Mikhail Klementyev, Presidential Press Service)

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9_4_2014_aptopix-belarus-ukraine-28201.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (right) prior to a summit to discuss the crisis in Ukraine. "Putin's real plan is the destruction of Ukraine and the re-establishment of the USSR," Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said. (Kazakh Presidential Press Service via Associated Press)

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Russia Putin.JPEG-0bf54.jpg

Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with participants in the youth educational forum at the Seliger youth camp near Lake Seliger, some 450 kilometres (281 miles) northwest of Moscow, in Tver region, Russia, Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. Russia's President Vladimir Putin on Friday called on pro-Russian separatists to release Ukrainian soldiers who have been surrounded by the rebels in eastern Ukraine. (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Mikhail Klimentyev, Presidential Press Service)