Putin: Russians should not lose themselves as nation

Russian President Vladimir Putin believes Russia should not only develop confidently in the 21st century, but also keep its identity.

"Russia should be a sovereign and influential country in the 21st century in a new economic, civilization, and military situation," Putin said in his address to the Federal Assembly.

"We should not just develop confidently, but also keep our national identity, not lose ourselves as a nation," he said.

"Russia should not just stay in geopolitical demand, it should increase this demand. It should be in demand with our neighbors and partners. It's very important to us, it concerns our economics, culture, science and education," Putin said.

"It concerns our diplomacy, especially the ability to take collective actions on the international scene. Of course, it also concerns our military power, which guarantees Russia's security and independence," the president said.

In view of the contradictory processes taking place in the world, the interests of the nation necessitate drastic actions from the administration, the president said.

"We should only look forward, to the future," he said.

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