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Friday, 2 March, 2001, 17:18 GMT
In pictures: Putin's first year
Russian President Vladimir Putin was elected in March 2000, on a wave of popular support. BBC News Online looks at some of the images from his first year in power.

Vladimir Putin with
When Boris Yeltsin resigned suddenly on 31 December 1999, he chose Vladimir Putin to be acting president until the elections.

Russian tanks in Chechnya
Mr Putin's tough stance on Chechnya helped him win a decisive election victory in March 2000.

Mr Putin and the press, election day
Mr Putin narrowly won 52.5% of the vote, narrowly avoiding a second round run-off

UK Prime Minister Tony Blair welcomes Mr Putin to 10 Downing Street
In April, Mr Putin visited UK Prime Minister Tony Blair in London, for his first foreign trip since the election.

Putin sworn in, his right hand on a copy of the 1993 Russian Constitution
President Putin was officially sworn in on 7 May 2000, vowing to safeguard human rights and defend Russian independence.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il welcomes Mr Putin to Pyongyang
In July 2000 Mr Putin became the first Russian leader to visit North Korea, making clear he wanted to play a diplomatic role.

Dancing at the Tatar national holiday Sabantui in Kazan, Jul 2000
Mr Putin was seen as a breath of fresh air for Russia, but his popularity was to be tested over the following months.

President Putin looks out to sea
He was heavily criticised for his handling of August's Kursk submarine disaster, in which 118 men died.

Mr Putin and his wife Ludmyla outside the Taj Mahal
The president's policy of trying to boost the Russian economy included a trip to India in October to promote bilateral trade.

Vladimir Gusinsky, the head of Media-Most, wanted in Russia on fraud charges
He is also cracking down on the so-called oligarchs, including independent TV station owner, Vladimir Gusinsky
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