A Successor, December 31, 1999

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‘I had noticed Vladimir Putin when he headed the chief control directorate of the administration and then became first deputy to Yumashev, who was responsible for work with the region. Putin appeared in the Kremlin in March of 1997. Sometimes he was left in charge, and I would have the opportunity to deal with him more frequently. Putin’s reports were a model of clarity. Unlike other deputies, who were always trying to lay out their visions of Russia and the world, Putin did not try to strike up conversations with me. Rather, it seemed that Putin tried to remove any sort of personal element from our contact. And precisely because of that, I wanted to talk to him more.’

Midnight Diaries, Boris Yeltsin, BBS Public Affairs, 2000

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