Outside of Russia, however, Putin and Russia's trustworthiness has been sorely hit in recent years and months. Aside from its conflict with Ukraine, its military action in Syria has raised eyebrows at a global level.
Russia is engaged in military action in the country's civil war -- ostensibly in order to support the battle against Islamic State but it is widely believed to have propped up Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime in a bid to extend its own influence in the region.
Meanwhile, in terms of "softer power," the country is in hot water following accusations of widespread, state-sponsored doping among its athletics team. The World Anti-doping Agency (WADA) called for Russia to be banned from the forthcoming Rio Olympic Games but the International Olympic Committee has said it is up to individual sports federations to impose bans.
So far, 108 Russians banned from next month's Olympics so far, including 67 out of 68 from the athletics team, the BBC reported. Putin hit back on Wednesday, saying the bans were part of a political plot.
"The deliberate campaign targeting our athletes was characterized by so-called double standards and opted for the idea of collective responsibility, which is not compatible with sport, justice, or the basic norms of law," Putin told members of Russia's Olympic team on Wednesday, Reuters reported.
"It is an attempt to apply the rules which unfortunately dominate in geopolitics to the sporting world," he said, blaming "short-sighted political schemers."
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