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Russia holds military parade to mark victory over Nazi Germany

MOSCOW | Xinhua | Russia on Thursday held an annual military parade on Moscow’s downtown Red Square to mark the 79th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s Victory over Nazi Germany in 1945.

Addressing troops and guests ahead of the parade, Russian President Vladimir Putin paid his tribute to all the soldiers of the anti-Fascist coalition who fought against Nazism and honored the feat of Chinese people in the battle against the Japanese militarism.

Putin stressed that Russia will always remember and never forget the common history of struggle and the inspiring tradition of the alliance.

Meanwhile, he slammed some Western elites’ policy of “revanchism, the mockery of history and the striving to justify current followers of Nazism,” which is intended to “instigate ever new regional conflicts, interethnic and interreligious strife.”

“Russia will do everything to avert a global confrontation. At the same time, we will not allow anyone to threaten us. Our strategic forces are always combat ready,” the Russian leader said.

“Russia is now going through a difficult, milestone period, the fate of the Motherland, its future depends on each of us,” Putin noted, stressing that he is confident in ensuring a free and safe future for Russia and the people.

The parade, involving over 9,000 people and 70 pieces of military equipment, started with the guard of honor bringing the Russian national flag and the Soviet Banner of Victory into the square.

A series of modern equipment including Iskander-M tactical missile systems, S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile launchers and Yars intercontinental ballistic missile systems were showcased in the parade.

The parade ended with airshow of combat aircraft over the square.

Leaders of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Cuba, Laos and Guinea-Bissau watched the celebrations alongside Putin on the podium.

Similar celebrations were held in other cities across Russia.

Russia has held the Victory Day parade and a series of celebrations on May 9 annually since 1995. ■

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