Vladimir Putin cautious about being listed as “most powerful person”
MOSCOW – Russian President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday he was more cautious after being named the most powerful person by Forbes magazine.
“I’m grateful to the experts at Forbes, but this is what I think of it: one is always uneasy about it because it’s restrictive somewhat, it may put restrictions on your decision making,” Putin told the radio and television network KBS of the Republic of Korea (ROK) in an interview ahead of his visit to Seoul, the national capital of ROK.
The interview was published by the Kremlin website later Tuesday. It was the first public comment by Putin after he topped a rank of the most powerful people by the U.S. business magazine.
Putin said he preferred to pay less attention to such rankings as “today one leader gets this status, tomorrow another one, the day after tomorrow a third one.”
The Russian president insisted the influence of Russia ” primarily” depends on the state of its economy, not his personal charisma.
Putin advanced two slots from last year’s ranking. U.S. President Barack Obama nevertheless dropped one place to the second.
Forbes highlighted the “shifting individual power dynamics” this year, saying Putin has solidified his control over Russia. It also reckoned Putin played his “judo diplomacy” well when dealing with the Syrian crisis and the incident involving classified documents leaker Edward Snowden, a former contractor of the U.S. National Security Agency.