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World is living through era of changes, which get ever deeper — Putin

The era of change began a long time ago, and the situation of change has become customary," the Russian President said

SOCHI, October 21. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin is certain that over the past decades the world was living through an era of changes.

"Indeed, ours is an era of grandiose changes," Putin said at the plenary session of the Valdai Discussion Club on Thursday. He remarked that this phrase, "an era of change", might seem a hackneyed cliche, for it had been used too often.

"Besides, the era of change began a long time ago, and the situation of change has become customary," Putin said.

"Over the past few decades many have developed a habit of recalling a Chinese proverbial phrase about ‘living in interesting times’. The Chinese people have had many thinkers and many valuable thoughts that we can use today. One of them can be rendered as a wish to everybody to escape the plight of living in an era of change. But we have to live through this era despite our own will. The changes get ever deeper and ever more fundamental," Putin said.

The Russian leader stressed the theme of the club’s session this year: Global Shake-Up in the 21st Century: The Individual, Values, and the State.

In his opinion, the topic was formulated very "straightforwardly and even sternly."

The Russian leader invited everybody to recall some other wise Chinese sayings as well.

"The word ‘crisis’ consists of two hieroglyphs: danger and opportunity. In Russia, many say that it takes brains to struggle with challenges and experience to cope with dangers," he said. "Of course, we must stay aware of the dangers and be prepared to resist the diverse threats that emerge during the era of change."

At the same time, he believes that it is no less important to keep in mind "the second component of the notion crisis - the opportunities not to be missed."

"The more so, since the crisis that we have to deal with is a conceptual and even civilizational. As a matter of fact, it is a crisis of approaches and principles that determine the very existence of human beings on Earth," Putin said. "We will have to delve into them again. The question is where we should move, what is to be abandoned and what is to be revised and corrected," he explained. "I am certain that genuine values are worth struggling for. They should be protected at any cost".