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Putin Features on Time Magazine's 'Most Influential' List

U.S. magazine Time has named Russian President Vladimir Putin on its annual list of the world's "100 most influential people.

Other politicians who made the Time list published this week included U.S. President Barack Obama, Chinese leader Xi Jinping, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who provided the write-up on Putin, said Russia's recent interference in Ukraine has shown that "Putin's worldview is colored by toxic fictions."

Putin's domestic approval ratings have soared after the annexation of Crimea — reaching 80 percent according to a recent survey by independent pollster Levada Center — but "his increased influence will be temporary," Albright said.

"To some, Putin has 'won' Crimea," she said. "Will he recognize his 'victory' is Pyrrhic — or try to repeat it? History is filled with aggressors who triumphed for a moment. Then failed."

Former Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, speaking Thursday in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, suggested that Moscow's supposed victory in Crimea may end up eroding Russia's global influence, and that Putin's actions in Ukraine aimed to "avenge a personal grudge."

Last year, both Forbes magazine and British newspaper The Times named Putin "the most influential person of the year."

Neither Putin nor Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev made Time magazine's 2013 list, with Rosneft chief executive Igor Sechin the only Russian on the list.

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