Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has been planning a World War II anniversary celebration scheduled to take place this May in Moscow. The celebration will occur on what is regarded as “Victory Day,” May 9, which this year marks the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Germany in WWII. An article from Ukraine Today states that as of March 17, 26 world leaders are expected to attend the anniversary parade in May.
As would be expected, international tensions have influenced political leaders’ decisions on whether or not to attend. For example, British Prime Minister David Cameron stated that he will not be flying to Moscow to take part in the anniversary celebrations. The reason he gave for this decision points to the ongoing tension between the U.K. and Russia over Russia’s choice to help arm separatists in eastern Ukraine.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel also voiced that due to the state of disagreement over Russia’s involvement in Ukraine, she would not be attending. As for the United States, President Barack Obama has officially declared that he will not be present at the parade either.
In an interesting move from Russia, it was recently revealed that the nation invited North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, a move that greatly concerns the United States as well as other political powers who fear “Russia and North Korea have been fostering warmer relations.”
Aryana Navarro ’18