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The Russia Portal
Русский Портал

Russia (Russian: Россия, Rossiya) is a Eurasian country extending over much of northern Eurasia. It is a semi-presidential republic comprising 85 federal subjects. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland (both via Kaliningrad Oblast), Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia, and North Korea. It also has maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk, Iran through the Caspian Sea, and the U.S. state of Alaska by the Bering Strait.

At 17,075,400 square kilometers, Russia is by far the largest country in the world, covering more than an eighth of the Earth’s land area; with 143 million people, it is the eighth largest by population. It extends across the whole of northern Asia and 40% of Europe, spanning 11 time zones and incorporating a great range of environments and landforms. Russia has the world's greatest reserves of mineral and energy resources, and is considered an energy superpower. It has the world's largest forest reserves and its lakes contain approximately one-quarter of the world's unfrozen fresh water.

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Fighting on Krakowskie Przedmieście by Juliusz Kossak
The Warsaw Uprising of 1794 (otherwise the "Warsaw Insurrection"); was an armed Polish insurrection by the city's populace early in the Kościuszko Uprising. Supported by the Polish Army, it aimed to throw off Russian control of the Polish capital. It began April 17, 1794, soon after Tadeusz Kościuszko's victory at Racławice. Although the Russian forces were more numerous and better equipped, the Polish regular forces and militia, armed with rifles and sabers from the Warsaw Arsenal, inflicted heavy losses on the surprised enemy garrison. Russian soldiers found themselves under crossfire, shot at from all sides and from buildings, and several units broke early and suffered heavy casualties in their retreat. Kościuszko's envoy, Tomasz Maruszewski, and Ignacy Działyński and others had been laying the groundwork for the uprising since the spring of 1793. They succeeded in winning popular support: a National Militia was formed from several thousand volunteers, led by Jan Kiliński, a master shoemaker and one of Warsaw's notable residents. Apart from the militia, the most famous units to take part in the liberation of Warsaw were formed of Poles who had previously been forcibly conscripted into the Russian service. A witness to the fighting was Jan Piotr Norblin, a French-born Polish painter who created a set of sketches and paintings of the struggle.

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Siberian tiger
Credit: S. Taheri/Fir0002

The Siberian tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), also known as the Amur, Korean, Manchurian, or North China Tiger, is a Critically Endangered subspecies of tiger (P. tigris). About 500 individuals are left in the wild, mostly in the regions of Primorye and Khabarovsk of eastern Russia.

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Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna of Russia
Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna of Russia was the eldest daughter of Tsar Nicholas II, the last autocratic ruler of the Russian Empire, and of Empress Alexandra of Russia. During her lifetime, Olga's future marriage was a matter of great speculation within Russia. Matches were rumored with Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich of Russia, Crown Prince Carol of Romania, Prince Edward, eldest son of Britain's George V, and with Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia. Olga herself wanted to marry a Russian and remain in her home country. During World War I, Olga nursed wounded soldiers in a military hospital until her own nerves gave out and, thereafter, oversaw administrative duties at the hospital. Olga's murder following the Russian Revolution of 1917 resulted in her canonization as a passion bearer by the Russian Orthodox Church. She was an elder sister of the famous Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia, who was widely rumored to have survived the assassination of the Imperial Family. In later years, when dozens of people made claims to be surviving members of the imperial family, a woman named Marga Boodts claimed to be Grand Duchess Olga. Few people took Boodts' claim seriously.

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A teenager is carrying sign "Berezovsky, we are with you!" during police attack on a 2007 Dissenters March in Saint Petersburg.
Elections are not a viable means of ensuring democratic change in Russia.

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