144m people live in Russia now, Chairman of the State Statistics Committee of the Russian Federation Vladimir Sokolin reported in an interview with the 'Podrobnosti' (Details) program live on the RTR television. According to him, the population of Russia is decreasing. "We are born, get older and die like other people. And we should understand that Russia is a typical European country, i.e. we are an old nation, and our population is decreasing like in any other European country," Sokolin added.
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.