Vladimir Putin Says He Will Step Down as Russia’s President in 2024

May 25, 2018, 7:47 PM UTC

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Friday that he will step down after his term expires in 2024 to comply with the country’s constitution, which prohibits anyone from serving more than two consecutive terms.

Putin made the remarks during an economic forum in St. Petersburg that was also broadcast on state TV. While the comments aren’t exactly surprising given the law, they don’t guarantee that he will relinquish power in six years, Reuters notes.

Putin previously served two consecutive six-year terms as president before stepping down in 2008, when he then become prime minister for four years before returning to the presidency. He could do the same in 2024, and then return to the presidency.

In 2024, Putin will be Russia’s longest-serving leader since Josef Stalin, who led the Soviet Union from 1929 until his death in 1953.