The Russian Federation is the largest country in the world by surface area (17.1 million square kilometers) located in two parts of the world at the same time — Europe and Asia — and spanning 11 time zones.

Russia is the 9th most populous country in the world (with more than 146 million people). Over 160 nationalities reside here, so Russia is distinguished by its significant ethno-cultural diversity. The country’s multinational character defines the diversity of religions practiced, the main ones are Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Judaism.

The coat of arms of the Russian Federation is a red quadrangular heraldic shield with rounded bottom corners, pointed at the tip with a golden double-headed eagle spreading its wings upward. The eagle is topped by two small crowns and — above them — a large crown, coupled with a ribbon. The eagle grasps the scepter in the right talon and the orb in the left. There is a silver horseman in a blue coat on a silver horse in the red shield on the breast of the eagle killing a black serpent inverted and trampled by the horse with a silver spear.

The state flag of the Russian Federation is a rectangular cloth of three equal horizontal stripes: white on the top, blue in the middle and red on the bottom. The ratio of the flag’s length to its width is 2:3. The white color symbolizes peace, purity; blue — faith and loyalty; red — strength, blood shed for the motherland.

The capital of Russia is Moscow. It is the political, economic and cultural center of the country.

Sports are one of the major national priorities of Russia.

Soviet and Russian athletes have always been prominent on the international sports arena, winning medals of various classes at the Olympics and world championships.

Major international sporting events are regularly held in Russia, for example, the XXVII World Summer Universiade of 2013 in Kazan, the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi in 2014, XVI World Aquatics championship in Kazan in 2015, and in 2018 eleven Russian cities will host the FIFA World Cup.