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Putin blames events of 20th century for containing Russia’s population growth

Vladimir Putin emphasized that over the past century, the Russian statehood had crumbled twice

VLADIVOSTOK, September 1. / TASS /. Russia’s population, according to some estimates, could now reach 500 mln people, if not for the two disintegrations of the country in the 20th century, President Vladimir Putin stated at a meeting with students of the ‘Ocean’ Russian Children's Center.

Putin emphasized that over the past century, the Russian statehood had crumbled twice. After the 1917 revolution, the Russian Empire ceased to exist. The country "lost colossal territories, gradually recovered, and then there was also the collapse of the Soviet Union," the Russian leader noted.

"What was the reason? We should carefully analyze the trigger of these dramatic events. If they had not happened, we would have had a different country. Some experts believe that our population would now hit about 500 mln people. Just think about it," Putin said.

The Russian president mentioned that currently, Russia was home to about 146 mln citizens. "And if these tragedies did not take place, there would be about 500 mln people. Is there a difference?" Putin repeated. And this, the president carried on, "the total power of the state, which is constantly surging in geometric progression. <...> An increasingly powerful basis for development, existence, prosperity is being created."

"We need to look at what lies behind these tragic events, so as to prevent such issues in the future," Putin said. This knowledge helps to understand how to strengthen the country’s power and build relations with neighbors, according to the Russian leader.

Putin noted that history was "not just a collection of numbers, names, events but the basis of humanitarian knowledge itself." The past helps to realize what is happening now as well as determine how to behave in the future, the Russian president explained.