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Learn more about Russia.
Flag of Russia Russia
Population: 143,782,338 (July 2004 est.)
Capital: Moscow
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An Introduction to Russia
Founded in the 12th century, the Principality of Muscovy, was able to emerge from over 200 years of Mongol domination (13th-15th centuries) and to gradually conquer and absorb surrounding principalities. In the early 17th century, a new Romanov Dynasty continued this policy of expansion across Siberia to the Pacific. Under PETER I (ruled 1682-1725), hegemony was extended to the Baltic Sea and the country was renamed the Russian Empire. During the 19th century, more territorial acquisitions were made in Europe and Asia. Repeated devastating defeats of the Russian army in World War I led to widespread rioting in the major cities of the Russian Empire and to the overthrow in 1917 of the imperial household. The Communists under Vladimir LENIN seized power soon after and formed the USSR. The brutal rule of Josef STALIN (1928-53) strengthened Russian dominance of the Soviet Union at a cost of tens of millions of lives.

The Soviet economy and society stagnated in the following decades until General Secretary Mikhail GORBACHEV (1985-91) introduced glasnost (openness) and perestroika (restructuring) in an attempt to modernize Communism, but his initiatives inadvertently released forces that by December 1991 splintered the USSR into 15 independent republics. Since then, Russia has struggled in its efforts to build a democratic political system and market economy to replace the strict social, political, and economic controls of the Communist period. While some progress has been made on the economic front, recent years have seen a recentralization of power under Vladimir PUTIN and an erosion in nascent democratic institutions. A determined guerrilla conflict still plagues Russia in Chechnya.

Russia map

Map of Russia ( Location ) : 60 00 N, 100 00 E, Northern Asia (that part west of the Urals is included with Europe), bordering the Arctic Ocean, between Europe and the North Pacific Ocean. For additional reports and educational information specific to Russia, refer to the Country Info menubar to the upper right.

About the Flag The Russian Flag
Three equal horizontal bands of white (top), blue, and red.

More Countries
Rankings of The Most Populous Countries in the World.

  1. China
  2. India
  3. United States
  4. Indonesia
  5. Brazil
  6. Russia
  7. Pakistan
  8. Bangladesh
  9. Japan
10. Nigeria
11. Mexico
12. Germany
13. Philippines
14. Vietnam
15. Egypt
16. Turkey
17. Iran
18. Ethiopia
19. Thailand
20. United Kingdom
21. France
22. Italy
23. Congo
24. Ukraine
25. South Korea
26. South Africa
27. Burma
28. Colombia
29. Spain
30. Poland

Full Country Listing »  
Country References
Country profile data for Russia

  • Defense
  • Economy Intro
  • Economy
  • Flag Description
  • Government
  • History
  • People
  • US Relations
  • Foreign Relations
  • Religious Freedom
 

Tabular Data
  • Economy
  • Communications
  • Geography
  • Government
  • Health
  • Issues
  • Military
  • People
  • Transportation
  • Chiefs of State
 
Additional Resources
  • Human Rights
  • Travel Issues
 
Countries Center »  

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Facts
Some interesting facts and figures about Russia.

Pop Growth Rate / Year:
    • -0.45%

Avg. Life Expectancy:
    • 59.91 yrs - Male
    • 73.27 yrs - Female

Phone Lines:
    • 35.5 million (2002)

Televisions:
    • 60.5 million (1997)

Radios:
    • 61,500,000 (1997)

Internet Code:
    • .ru

Did you know ... People from Russia are called Russians
 

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Data Source: Central Intelligence Agency 2004 World Factbook