Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday he would run for president again in 2024, a move expected to keep him in power until at least 2030.
Putin, who was handed the presidency by Boris Yeltsin on the last day of 1999, has already served as president for longer than any other ruler of Russia since Josef Stalin, beating even Leonid Brezhnev's 18-year tenure.
After awarding soldiers who had fought in Ukraine with Russia's highest military honour, the hero of Russia gold star, Putin was asked by a lieutenant colonel if he would run again, Russian news agencies said.
The Kremlin chief said that he would.
Reuters reported last month that Putin had made the decision to run.
For Putin, the election is a formality: with the support of the state, state media and almost no mainstream public dissent, he is certain to win. Putin turned 71 on October 7.
Opposition politicians cast the election as a fig leaf of democracy that adorns what they see as the corrupt dictatorship of Putin's Russia.
Supporters of Putin dismiss that analysis, pointing to independent polling which shows he enjoys approval ratings of above 80 per cent. They say that Putin has restored order and some of the clout Russia lost during the chaos of the Soviet collapse.