The term Baltic Russians is usually used to refer to the Russian-speaking communities in the Baltic states: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
The term "Baltic Russians" does not imply a separate ethnic subcategory among the Russians. It came into use in the context of discussions of their fate after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Therefore, Russians living in the Saint Petersburg area and the Kaliningrad Oblast are usually excluded, as they live within the current administrative boundaries of Russia. The Russian minorities of Finland and Poland, despite the fact that they live in countries by the Baltic Sea coast, are not considered "Baltic Russians" because they live on the territory that has never been part of the Soviet Union.
As of 2011, there are 1,071,572 ethnic Russians in the Baltic States (Latvia 556,422, Estonia 340,750, Lithuania 174,900), having declined from 1,726,000 in 1989.
The term may often include Ukrainians and Belarusians, as well as some other nationalities, in addition to Russians.
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“But these Russians are too romantictoo exaltés; they give way to a morbid love of martyrdom; they think they can do no good to mankind unless they are uncomfortable.”
—H. Seton Merriman (18621903)