Russia is celebrating the 70th anniversary of its victory in the 2nd World War. The leaders of 27 nations have assembled in Moscow for the event including Indian President Pranab Mukherjee. The events mark the surrender of Nazi Germany in the war.
It is estimated that about 200 pieces of military hardware, including intercontinental ballistic missile carriers have assembled in the Red Square of Russia’s capital. This parade also features a march by 16,500 troops.
Western leaders such as US President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron decided to stay away from the extravaganza considering the faltering relations between Russia and the West over Ukraine issue.
Chinese President Xi Jinping was perhaps the most prominent guest at the event. Russian President used the opportunity to target his adversaries when he said, “in the past decades we have seen attempts to create a unipolar world,” clearly signaling at the United States.
At the end of the World War II, it was Soviet Union’s Red Army that captured Berlin on 9th May 1945. An estimated 27 million Soviet soldiers and civilians lost their lives in the war, more than any other country in the conflict. The victory thus is a great pride for the people of Russia and the countries of the former Soviet Union.
Later in the day up to 200,000 people were expected to march through Red Square with portraits of relatives who fought in the war.
President Pranab Mukherjee was conferred an honorary doctorate at the prestigious Diplomatic Academy in Russia. At the occasion he said, “India-Russia relations…will not be affected by the winds of transient global political trends. Russia has been a pillar of strength at difficult moments in India’s history,” adding that India “will always reciprocate” Russia’s support in its “difficult moments.”