The transfer of power would not pose a problem to the Kremlin; it could be accomplished through a possible merger of Russia and Belarus, opposition leader Alexei Navalny said making a speech at the Boris Nemtsov Forum in Warsaw.
“All ‘transfer’ things will be easily solved by a process of the feasible uniting of Russia and Belarus, or at least, by making amendments into the Constitution,” said Alexei Navalny.
“In the event of the non-admission of the opposition candidates, at least two people – [Defense Minister] Sergei Shoigu and [Foreign Minister] Sergei Lavrov – may win elections with the same result as Putin,” he suggested. According to the politician, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin stands a chance to take the place of Putin.
Although the operation ‘successor is not a problem for Vladimir Putin, ensuring Russia’s economic growth remains a task beyond his strength, Navalny believes.
In March 2019, Bloomberg reported with reference to sources close to the Kremlin that Putin might play Belarus-Russia uniting card to stay in power. According to its sources, a transition similar to the one under way in Kazakhstan was actively being discussed in Moscow.
“Options being explored include pressing neighbouring Belarus into uniting with Russia to create a new state so that Putin can sidestep constitutional term limits [starting 2024, Putin will have no right to seek reelection – Belsat],” the article reads.
On October 9-10, Warsaw is hosting the annual Boris Nemtsov Forum, a conference that brings together politicians, activists, intellectuals and journalists who advocate for establishing a dialogue between Russians and Europeans. The forum is devoted to the legacy of Boris Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister of the Russian government and opposition leader, who was killed in February, 2015.