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Founded in the 12th century, the Principality of Muscovy, was able to emerge from over 200 years of Mongol domination (13th-15th centuries) and to gradually conquer and absorb surrounding principalities. In the early 17th century, a new Romanov Dynasty continued this policy of expansion across Siberia to the Pacific. Under PETER I (ruled 1682-1725), hegemony was extended to the Baltic Sea and the country was renamed the Russian Empire. During the 19th century, more territorial acquisitions were made in Europe and Asia. Defeat in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05 contributed to the Revolution of 1905, which resulted in the formation of a parliament and other reforms. Repeated devastating defeats of the Russian army in World War I led to widespread rioting in the major cities of the Russian Empire and to the overthrow in 1917 of the imperial household. The Communists under Vladimir LENIN seized power soon after and formed the USSR. The brutal rule of Iosif STALIN (1928-53) strengthened Communist rule and Russian dominance of the Soviet Union at a cost of tens of millions of lives. The Soviet economy and society stagnated in the following decades until General Secretary Mikhail GORBACHEV (1985-91) introduced glasnost (openness) and perestroika (restructuring) in an attempt to modernize Communism, but his initiatives inadvertently released forces that by December 1991 splintered the USSR into Russia and 14 other independent republics. Since then, Russia has shifted its post-Soviet democratic ambitions in favor of a centralized semi-authoritarian state in which the leadership seeks to legitimize its rule through managed national elections, populist appeals by former President PUTIN, and continued economic growth. Russia has severely disabled a Chechen rebel movement, although violence still occurs throughout the North Caucasus.


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Transportation

Airports World Ranking: 5
1,218 (2012)

Airports - with paved runways
Total 593
Over 3,047 m 54
2,438 to 3,047 m 198
1,524 to 2,437 m 125
914 to 1,523 m 95
Under 914 m 121 (2012)

Airports - with unpaved runways
Total 625
Over 3,047 m 3
2,438 to 3,047 m 14
1,524 to 2,437 m 69
914 to 1,523 m 85
Under 914 m 454 (2012)

Heliports
48 (2012)

Pipelines
Condensate 122 km; gas 160,952 km; liquid petroleum gas 127 km; oil 77,630 km; oil/gas/water 38 km; refined products 13,658 km (2010)

Railways World Ranking: 2
Total 87,157 km
Broad gauge
86,200 km 1.520-m gauge (40,300 km electrified)
Narrow gauge
957 km 1.067-m gauge (on Sakhalin Island)
Note
An additional 30,000 km of non-common carrier lines serve industries (2006)

Roadways World Ranking: 7
Total 982,000 km
Paved
776,000 km (includes 30,000 km of expressways)
Unpaved 206,000 km
Note
Includes public, local, and departmental roads (2009)

Waterways World Ranking: 2
102,000 km (including 48,000 km with guaranteed depth; the 72,000 km system in European Russia links Baltic Sea, White Sea, Caspian Sea, Sea of Azov, and Black Sea) (2009)

Merchant marine World Ranking: 11
Total 1,143
By type
Bulk carrier 20, cargo 642, carrier 3, chemical tanker 57, combination ore/oil 42, container 13, passenger 15, passenger/cargo 7, petroleum tanker 244, refrigerated cargo 84, roll on/roll off 13, specialized tanker 3
Foreign-owned
155 (Belgium 4, Cyprus 13, Estonia 1, Ireland 1, Italy 14, Latvia 2, Netherlands 2, Romania 1, South Korea 1, Switzerland 3, Turkey 101, Ukraine 12)
Registered in other countries
439 (Antigua and Barbuda 3, Belgium 1, Belize 30, Bulgaria 2, Cambodia 50, Comoros 12, Cook Islands 1, Cyprus 46, Dominica 3, Georgia 6, Hong Kong 1, Kiribati 1, Liberia 109, Malaysia 2, Malta 45, Marshall Islands 5, Moldova 5, Mongolia 2, Panama 49, Romania 1, Saint Kitts and Nevis 13, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 11, Sierra Leone 7, Singapore 2, Spain 6, Vanuatu 7, unknown 19) (2010)

Ports and terminals
Kaliningrad, Kavkaz, Nakhodka, Novorossiysk, Primorsk, Saint Petersburg, Vostochnyy


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  Russia (Moscow):


  GPS points from Russia (Moscow)

Kerkavozh Respublika Komi

Laguna Tynkurgin Chukotskiy Avtonomnyy Okrug

Ozero Kazach'ye Novosibirskaya Oblast

Kachkovski Point Murmansk

Peski Gashup Astrakhanskaya Oblast'

Dolinsk Orenburgskaya Oblast

Khokhlatskiy Altay

Koryakin Respublika Sakha (yakutiya)




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