Russia will be one third Muslim in a decade and a half, and the demographic trend is too far along to stop.
Russia’s Muslim-majority regions, including republics in the North Caucasus and the republic of Tatarstan, are known to have the highest birth rates in the country, reflecting similar trends worldwide. Various estimates place the current Muslim population in Russia at between 14 million and 20 million people, or between 10 to 14 percent of Russia’s total population of 146.8 million in 2018, reported The Moscow Times.
“According to experts, Russia’s [Muslim] population will increase to 30 percent in a decade and a half,” said Ravil Gainutdin, the chairman of the Council of Muftis, a religious group representing Russia’s Muslim community.
This demographic trend will require dozens of new mosques to be built in Russia’s biggest cities to accommodate the new Muslim population, according the the Grand Mufti.
Russia has long worried about low birth rates among its white, European population, even giving financial incentives to Russians to have more children. This has been a pet project of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Russia is also concerned about Islamic terror emanating from the Caucasus as soldiers return from fighting for the Islamic State. Russian security services routinely run operations in Dagestan and surrounding areas, hunting militants.
Archpriest Dmitry Smirnov, an official in Russia’s Orthodox Church, agreed with Gainutdin’s forecast and predicted that “there won’t be any Russians left in 2050.”
“It’s too late,” he told the Govorit Moskva radio station when asked if the demographic trendcould be reversed, wrote The Moscow Times.