Vladimir Putin
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What will Putin's return mean for Russia?

4 March 2012 Last updated at 22:28 GMT

Vladimir Putin has claimed victory in Russia's presidential election.

He told thousands of cheering people outside the Kremlin that he had won in an open and honest struggle.

Opposition groups said there was widespread fraud, with some people voting more than once.

So what will Vladimir Putin's return to the Kremlin mean for Russia, and for its often strained relations with the West?

BBC Moscow Correspondent Steve Rosenberg reports.