Victory Day 60th anniversary commemorated in Russia
Monday, May 9, 2005
Today the 60th anniversary of Victory Day was commemorated in Russia, and other successor states of the Soviet Union.
The parade on Red Square started at 7:00 UTC. The leaders of more than 50 countries and heads of several international organisations attended the parade. George W. Bush watched the parade with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Others attending included:
- Hu Jintao - General Secretary of the Communist Party of China
- Kofi Annan - Secretary General of the United Nations
- Junichiro Koizumi - Prime Minister of Japan
- Gerhard Schröder - Chancellor of Germany
- Jacques Chirac - President of the French Republic
More than 4,000 World War II veterans and 7,000 military personnel were involved in the parade. The culmination was the flight of 12 planes (made up of SU-25s and MIG-29s), which emitted white, blue and red smoke to paint a Russian flag in the air.
Average Moscow citizens were not allowed to the parade. The exits from several metropolitan stations were closed. Mass celebrations are planned to be held at Poklonnaya Gora, Moscow's primary WW2 memorial.
Several new monuments were opened today, such as the 8-meter statue of Charles de Gaulle by Zurab Tsereteli and the monument to soldiers from Allied countries.
In the evening there was a large fireworks display.
The 60th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day was commemorated across Europe yesterday.
- "VE Day 60th anniversary commemorated across Europe" — Wikinews, May 8, 2005
- "Anti-Bush protest in Amsterdam" — Wikinews, May 8, 2005
- "Leaders mourn Soviet wartime dead" — BBC News, May 8, 2005
- "Bush joins Putin to mark war's end" — CNN.com, May 8, 2005
- Judith Ingram. "World Leaders Pay Tribute to Soviet Sacrifice in World War II on 60th Anniversary of VE Day" — ABC News (US), May 9, 2005