A military coup is becoming a possibility in Russia as the war in Ukraine continues, President Vladimir Putin’s former speechwriter has said.
Putin's speechwriter turned political analyst Abbas Gallyamov said that as Russian losses mount in Ukraine and the country experiences more hardship brought by Western sanctions, Russians will look for someone to blame.
"The Russian economy is deteriorating. The war is lost." He told CNN’s Erin Burnett on Monday, January 30.
"There are more and more dead bodies returning to Russia, so Russians will be coming across more difficulties and they'll be trying to find explanation why this is happening, looking around to the political process and they'll be answering themselves: 'Well, this is because our country is governed by an old tyrant, an old dictator,'" Gallyamov said, referring to Putin.
“At this moment, I think a military coup will become possible.”
That moment may come in the next 12 months, he said.
“So in one year when the political situation changes and there's a really hated unpopular president at the head of the country and the war is really unpopular, and they need to shed blood for this, at this moment, a coup becomes a real possibility,” he added.
Gallyamov also said he believes Putin may cancel presidential elections scheduled to be held in March 2024.
“Judging by his actions, when he is escalating on something without necessity, he might really cancel the elections. Without victory over Ukraine, he'll face difficulty with the Russians. Russians don't need him if he's not strong. He might really declare the martial law and cancel the elections,” Gallyamov said.