translated from Spanish: Russia: how the plan to increase the retirement age brought down the popularity of Vladimir Putin

a series of mass protests have shaken the ca illustration of Russia the last few weeks, but above all, the popularity of President Vladimir Putin.
Just this Sunday, more than 10,000 people, according to independent observers, took part in demonstrations in Moscow and other cities.
The reason for the massive discontent is the reform of the pension system to raise the retirement age for women at 60 and men at 65, from 2019.
Putin has made concessions on the original plan. However, the anger of the population has remained.
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The imagenREUTERSImage copyright caption «We lie», can be read in this poster featuring Vladimir Putin, Anton Siluanov and Dmitri Medvedev.Una of the reasons to oppose the changes is that, according to some unions, many not live weather enough to claim a pension.
As a result of the planned adjustment, Putin’s approval has fallen the strongest over the past four years.
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How is the controversial plan?
The Russian Government announced this project of reform when it began the World Cup Russia, by which earned reviews that was trying to play down the attention to the «bad news».
The initial proposal was to gradually raise the retirement age for women from 55 to 63; and for men, from 60 to 65.
Copyright of the imagenREUTERSImage captionLas protests forced Vladimir Putin to give a televised message to the nation, something that is not very common on your part. But on Wednesday, in a televised message, Putin said that the age of retirement for women alone would rise to 60 and that those with three or more children could retire earlier.
Russian men have a life expectancy of 66 years and women 77 years, according to the World Health Organization.
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However, the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, said that the Russians were living longer and leading a more active life.
In addition, he explained that there were 12 million pensioners who work in Russia, which is equivalent to almost a quarter of all retirees.
Why Russia wants to raise the retirement age?
Most economists and many Russians are in agreement that the pension system is in trouble.
The population is aging and the State spends increasingly more in pensions.
Copyright of the imagenGETTY IMAGESImage captionPutin said that women you could retire at 60, and not to the 63, as initially proposed. After the chaos of the economic principles of the 1990s, the population of Russia fell into a tailspin.
Since then, the birth rate has improved slightly, but not enough.
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President Putin has just signed a new draft law on expenditure on pensions, which foresees a deficit of more than $4,200 million by 2018, i.e. 1.6% of the State budget.
Clearly the situation is not sustainable.
What has Putin said about this?
Always thought that the pension reform would be a very controversial subject, says Sarah Rainsford, BBC Moscow correspondent.
«The idea was that the Government (in charge of the Prime Minister, Medvedev) assumed the consequences of this harsh reform», he says. «Putin (head of State) had tried to distance himself from the discussion.»
«But his approval just fell, as street protests grew,» said Rainsford.
Copyright of the imagenGETTY IMAGESImage Captionsegun the Government of Russia, the citizens of that country are living longer. From April to July of 2018, the popularity of Putin fell from 82% to 67%, according to Levada-Center, the main polling independent of Russia.
The fall is dramatic considering that, according to this agency, its adoption had remained above 80% since March of 2014, month in which Russia annexed Crimea.
In the last four months, seen well the Government also fell from 47% to 33%, and the number of Russians who think that the country is going in the right direction fell from 60% to 45%, reports the Levada-Center.
New details in 6 «superweapons» of Russia that Putin could «leave useless» defense system of NATO in his televised speech on Wednesday, Putin «acknowledged that he had never promised this step as Chairman, but he argued that the» times and the economic environment had changed», Rainsford reports.
«But then his tone of kindness and sympathy – calling ‘dear friends’ viewers – the severity,» describes the journalist.
Image captionAlgunos trade unions fear that many Russians do not reach receivables no retirement pension, due to the allegedly low life expectancy. The President said that the rise in the retirement age had been delayed for years and that this delay could cause inflation and increase poverty.
Continue postponing the adjustment would endanger the stability and security of the Russian society, he warned.
How is «The beast» of Putin, the new Limo of the President of Russia who first visited abroad «any further delay would be irresponsible,» said. «Our decisions must be fair and balanced.»
Rainsford argues that «any hope that Putin would rule reform, or would change it significantly, it was quickly discarded».
The Kremlin said that Putin has been involved in this topic because of its importance, not to revive his popularity index.
What is known of the GRU, the ultra-secret agency of Russian military intelligence linked to electoral hacking in US and other controversial operations abroad, his spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told the BBC that it had been a «courageous step, Putin-style».
At the same time, State television has been to promote reform.
However, Rainsford warns that «while this unpopular measure could have been firmly linked to the Government (headed by Medvedev), the risk for the President of Russia is now, largely, what the proposal of Vladimir Putin».

Original source in Spanish

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