Russian President Vladimir Putin pays a state visit to China on Saturday at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping.
The following is a brief introduction to the Russian president.
Born in Leningrad (today’s St. Petersburg) on Oct. 7, 1952, Putin graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1975 and was commissioned to work in the former Soviet Union’s State Security Committee (KGB).
From 1985 to 1990, Putin worked in East Germany as a KGB agent.
In 1990, Putin returned to the Soviet Union and worked as an assistant to Anatoly Sobchak, then rector of Leningrad State University.
Starting in June 1991, Putin began to work as chairman of the Committee for International Relations at the St. Petersburg City Hall and from 1994, concurrently held the position of deputy chairman of the St. Petersburg City Government.
In 1996, Putin moved his family to Moscow, where he was offered the post of deputy chief of the Presidential Property Management Directorate.
In March 1997, he was appointed deputy chief of staff of the Presidential Executive Office and chief of Main Control Directorate.
In May 1998, Putin was made first deputy chief of staff of the Presidential Executive Office. In July 1998, then Russian President Boris Yeltsin appointed him director of the Federal Security Service (FSB), the successor to the KGB.
In March 1999, while still heading the FSB, Putin was appointed secretary of the State Security Council. In August 1999, Yeltsin appointed Putin prime minister. Upon Yeltsin’s resignation on Dec. 31, 1999, Putin became acting president of Russia.
On March 26, 2000, Putin won the presidential election and was re-elected in 2004 by a landslide victory.
In the 2008 presidential election, Putin endorsed then first Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev as he himself was barred from seeking a third consecutive term under the Russian Constitution.
After Medvedev’s election as president, Putin became prime minister in the new government.
In March 2012, Putin again won a resounding victory in the country’s presidential election.
Putin made eleven trips to China in his capacity as Russian president. He paid three visits to China from August 2008 to October 2011 as Russian prime minister. Enditem