Discuss as:

Protests can't stop Putin from returning to power

Vladimir Rodionov / Pool via AFP - Getty Images

Russia's president-elect Vladimir Putin walks down Andreyevsky (St.Andrew's ) Hall of the Great Kremlin Palace in Moscow May 7, as he arrives to take his oath of office and become Russia's president for a historic third mandate at a glittering ceremony inside the Kremlin.

Natalia Kolesnikova / AFP - Getty Images

Russian people march along a street during an opposition's protest rally in Moscow on May 6. Russian riot police violently clashed with protesters at a rally on the eve of Vladimir Putin's return for a third Kremlin term, arresting over 400 people including opposition leaders.

Alexander Zemlianichenko / Pool via AP

Russian President Vladimir Putin and former President Dmitry Medvedev, right, during the inauguration ceremony at the Cathedral Square in the Kremlin in Moscow, May 7. Vladimir Putin took the oath, saying he considers "service to the fatherland and our nation to be the meaning of my life."

Andrey Smirnov / AFP -Getty Images

Russian Police officers detain opposition supporters during a rally in Moscow on May 6.

By msnbc.com staff and news services: MOSCOW --  Vladimir Putin was sworn in as Russia's president at a glittering ceremony on Monday, hours after clashes between police and thousands of protesters in the country's capital laid bare the deep divisions over his return to the Kremlin for six more years. 

In the latest demonstrations on Sunday, police detained more than 400 people, including three opposition leaders, after tensions boiled over at a rally attended by about 20,000 people across the Moscow river from the Kremlin. 

Putin, a former KGB spy, took his oath before nearly 2,000 guests in the Kremlin's St Andrew Hall, the former throne room with sparkling chandeliers, gilded pillars and high Gothic vaults, before being blessed by the head of the Russian Orthodox Church and taking charge of the nuclear suitcase.  Full story.