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Monday 20.05.2019 | Name days: Venta, Salvis, Selva
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Opinion: current stability in Russia considered a value by residents

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUThe stability observed in Russia is considered a value by its residents, said Latvian ambassador to Russia Māris Riekstiņš.

The ambassador stresses that the level of dissatisfaction among Russian residents is considerably high. At the same time, there is no denial that residents’ trust in Russian President Vladimir Putin lies in the fact that the country has higher stability when compared to the 90s.

‘What I’ve seen during my time in Russia as ambassador is that stability is a powerful factor that affects people’s minds. In spite of the fact that Russian residents may be dissatisfied with certain political elements, the existing stability in the country is considered a value. It is possible this is the reason why people’s desire to take it to the streets is low,’ allows the diplomat.

He explains that many residents are dissatisfied with Russia’s current policy. Protests against raising retirement age represent one example.

At the same time, some residents also believe the major funds allocated for Russia’s foreign policy, used to position the country as a major superpower, would be of better use elsewhere. ‘People believe it would be more useful to invest money in things that are more important to regular residents, such as healthcare, education and infrastructure,’ says the diplomat.

As it is known, at the beginning of October Putin signed the law on raising retirement age. This law provides for gradually increasing retirement age by five years. With that, retirement age for men will be 65, whereas retirement age for women will be 60.

Putin announced this proposal in August, giving in to the government’s pressure to soften the planned pension system reform. However, Putin also said it is necessary to implement heavy and unpopular activities to prevent risks for the existing pension system created by ‘deep demographic problems’.

There have been several protests against the pension system reform in Russia. Some of them were organized by communists, who are generally loyal to Putin’s regime, and infamous opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

85% of residents are negative towards the initiative to increase pension age, according to survey results. Only one-fourth of interviewed people believe Putin’s proposals on softening the situation with the reform have helped.

Putin’s press-secretary Dmitry Peskov denied on Wednesday that Kremlin is worried about the decline of the president’s rating. He added the main objective of the head of Kremlin is ‘working for the benefit of the nation’.


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