Photograph by Robert Wallis
Russian Portraits
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Valentina, selling bread on the street in Moscow. A military widow, her husband was an officer in the Soviet Army in Uzbekistan. When Uzbekistan gained independence, Valentina lost the free housing she had been guaranteed by the government and came to Moscow to seek help and shelter from relatives. She can not obtain housing in Moscow even though she is the widow of an officer because she has no residency permit in the capital.  This situation is repeated in Russia as the former Soviet Republics have pressured Russians to leave.
The severe housing shortage all over Russia (except for those with enough money to buy privatized flats) means that these internal refugees are dependent on relatives or become homeless. Valentina bakes and sells bread to supplement her meager pension.
Cocktail party after a fashion show at the Slavanskaya Hotel, Moscow.
Photograph by Robert Wallis
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