Putin says he'll run for reelection
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Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Wednesday that he will seek reelection in his country's elections in March, The Associated Press reports.

Putin made the official announcement to an audience of automobile factory workers, saying there was no place he would rather declare his bid for the presidency. 

The Russian leader, who has an 80 percent approval rating, avoided making an official statement at an earlier event on Wednesday, saying he would decide "shortly" whether to run but that public trust would be a key factor in his choice. 


Putin was first elected to the presidency in 2000, where he served until 2008. Before running for a third, non-consecutive term in 2012, Putin served as Russia's prime minister under Dmitry Medvedev, who approved the lengthening of presidential terms from four to six years. 

Russia was banned this week from participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, over a state-backed doping program. Putin and all other Russian government officials will not be allowed to attend the games.