I congratulate the people of Russia as you celebrate your National Day on June 12, the anniversary of the peaceful establishment of the sovereign Russian Federation.
We pause today and appreciate the great works of Russian literature, music, and art that have touched so many people around the world. We are especially reminded of the power of art to challenge and inspire us this year as we celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov, one of the greatest poets of Russia's Golden Age.
This year also marks the 215th anniversary of the renowned poet and playwright, Aleksandr Pushkin, and the 100th anniversary of the publication of Anna Akhmatova's collection, "The Rosary."
We join the Russian people in celebrating these titans of Russian culture and literature, and the many more who have enriched our nations beyond measure.
May the Russian and the American people share in a peaceful, stable, and prosperous future.