Russia Parade World War II victory in the shadow of coronavirus

Russia is celebrating its biggest public holiday, Victory Day, with a military parade in Moscow on May 9.

President Vladimir Putin has reluctantly postponed the big annual celebration due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It was 75 years since the USSR defeated Nazi Germany. World War II cost more than 20 million Soviet lives.

The Moscow lockdown relaxed earlier this month, including tanks and long-range missiles that allowed the parade to advance.

The annual parade in Red Square was always an occasion for President Putin to exploit feelings of Russian patriotism by recalling Soviet times.

He restored Soviet symbols of the Cold War era and reintroduced heavy weapons in the parade in 2008. The black and gold wartime St George ribbon is especially ubiquitous.

On May 8, 1945, Nazi Germany surrendered to the Allies - Britain, the US and the USSR. Traditionally Russia and other former Soviet republics have signaled victory on May 9.

Nazi Berlin fell in the pictures
Stopping the delayed event on June 24 commemorates the Victory Parade organized by the USSR in 1945.

This year's parade is special for Mr. Putin, as Russia conducts a nationwide vote on the constitutional amendments in a week's time, which will pave the way for the incumbent to stay in office by the end of the current term.

Technically, mass celebrations in Moscow are still banned, with a large number of new Kovid-19 cases continuing to be registered every day - more than 1,000 during Tuesday's parade.

Residents of Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin asked to stay at home and watch TV parades.

War veterans who were invited to participate in the war were alone in the viewing stand, and the authorities hoped that this compelling social disturbance would mean that they would not be wearing masks. Everyone invited is required to test the virus.

Participating military units were detained for weekly rehearsals, and were not directly involved in the incident to avoid contact with anyone.

The parade required 13,000 military personnel, 234 armored vehicles, and 75 aircraft to perform a traditional flypast.

These units were involved from the Soviet Union and most of the republics from China, Mongolia, and Serbia.

Military parades are also taking place in other cities, including the "Hero Cities," which saw a massive struggle against the Nazis in the Soviet "Great Patriotic War."

In the Far East of Russia, despite the appearance of war veterans and officers, Vladivostok marched without spectators, local media reported. However, this year 13 cities and big cities have decided not to parade.

Mr. Putin recognizes the sacrifices made in the war on a personal level: his father was severely wounded in the war and his infant brother, Victor Leningrad - was killed in the current Saint Petersburg siege.

Some of the leading world leaders are to take part in the May 9 parade, which includes French President Emmanuel Macron and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Serbia's President Alexander Vucic and Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko will attend this year, but a few other European leaders will be in attendance.

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