Putin Turns 55, Celebrates Last Birthday as President in Kremlin

President Vladimir Putin is celebrating Sunday his 55th birthday in the Kremlin, for the eighth and final time in the president's capacity.

Putin who remains widely popular in Russia amid oil-driven economic growth in the country said he would celebrate his birthday with members of the Russian Security Council, and senior military and security officers.

Putin whose presidential tenure expires next year said he would head the list of the main pro-Kremlin party United Russia at the December 2 parliamentary elections.

Putin also said he could become prime minister in 2008, if United Russia won the December 2007 parliamentary elections.

Some 10,000 members of the pro-Kremlin youth movement Nashi (Ours) marched in Moscow to congratulate Putin.

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