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Former Putin aide: Coup a ‘real possibility’

A former speechwriter for Russian President Vladimir Putin predicted that a military coup was possible for the country in the next year, pointing to a deteriorating economy and the growing unpopularity of the war in Ukraine.

Abbas Gallyamov, Putin’s former speechwriter who is now a political commentator, said the Russian president could be facing a rising tide of opposition at home as the war wears on, in an interview with CNN.

“The Russian economy is deteriorating,” Gallyamov said. “The war is lost. There are more and more dead bodies returning to Russia, so Russians will be coming across more difficulties and they’ll be trying to find an explanation why this is happening, looking around to the political process and they’ll be answering themselves: ‘Well, this is because our country is governed by an old tyrant, an old dictator.’”

And as people confront this reality, Gallyamov argues, “a military coup will become possible.”

“So in one year when the political situation changes and there’s a really hated unpopular president at the head of the country and the war is really unpopular, and they need to shed blood for this, at this moment, a coup becomes a real possibility, he said.

The country is scheduled to hold a presidential election in 2024, but Gallyamov said he thinks there is a possibility that Putin cancels the elections in the face of the war.

Western allies in recent days have beefed up their support for Ukraine, with the US and Germany both agreeing to send tanks to the warring country.

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