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‘Life is getting harder for Putin’: Experts say Moscow protests show president’s power could be waning

Tatiana Stanovaya, a non-resident scholar at the Carnegie Center in Moscow, told CNBC that disapproval of Putin is increasing, nonetheless.“In Russia, we have growing discontent among ordinary Russians and this is seen through the falling approval ratings of Putin. The decline began in June 2018 so it’s a general process,” she said. Stanovaya noted that the Moscow protests had started as a local movement but had become nationalized due to the perceived harshness of the authorities’ response.

“In the beginning it was (a) Moscow conflict but the Kremlin’s support of harsh tactics by the authorities meant that it became a federal case and a federal agenda,” she told CNBC last week. She believed Putin had underestimated the situation: “He thinks it will calm down but i don’t think so. I think he will have to face some longer-term risks from parts of Russian society” unhappy with his rule, she noted.

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