Russian President Vladimir Putin gave another impressive performance at the annual three-hour question and answer session on Thursday, at which he proved able to answer even the toughest questions put to him by reporters, Christian Science Monitor correspondent Fred Weir told Radio Sputnik.
"This is a format pretty much invented by him that highlights the strengths of his personality. He is really well-briefed, extremely adept and has an ability to handle questions right across the board," said Weir.
"The format drops the barriers, at least for a few hours, between him and the Russian public and the world at large, so I think it's a very effective thing."
"They don't have to, there are distinct differences between Russian political culture and the Western one, and in the West, political processes don't select for people like that in the first place. It would be really weird for a Western politician to address all those minute detailed questions."
According to the correspondent, who has covered all 11 of the Q and A sessions, the most significant answers the president provided this year concerned the stabilization of the Russian economy, and his reiteration of the need to find a political resolution to the Syrian crisis.
In addition, Weir highlighted the president's statement about the necessity of resolving the status of Ukraine's southeastern region via political means, and the inclusion of Donbass representatives in the political process.