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Over 2 Million More Russians Fall Below Poverty Line

In the first nine months of the year, 2.3 million more Russians fell into poverty, as Russia continues to experience economic recession, according to data released by the Rosstat state statistics service on Thursday.

The total number of Russians living below the official poverty line — those with monthly incomes of less than 9,662 rubles ($140) — increased to 20.3 million people between January and September, Rosstat reported.

The poverty rate in Russia in those nine months rose to 14.1 percent, compared to 12.6 percent registered during the same period last year, according to Rosstat.

The increase in the number of citizens living below subsistence level comes as Russia's economy is reeling from plummeting oil prices and sanctions imposed on the country by the U.S. and the European Union.

This year, Russia's economy is expected to contract by 4 percent.

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