YEREVAN – Armenian soldiers will march in the upcoming Russian military parade in Moscow that will mark the 75th anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two, the Defense Ministry in Yerevan said on Tuesday.
The Red Square parade, originally scheduled for May 9, was postponed by the Kremlin in April due to the coronavirus pandemic. President Vladimir Putin announced last week that it will be held on June 24 despite the continuing spread of coronavirus in Russia.
Putin told Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu to ensure “the strictest security standards while preparing for the parade.” “The risks for all participants must be kept to a minimum and better excluded,” he said.
Like the armed forces of other ex-Soviet states, the Armenian military has been invited to participate in the annual display of Russia’s military might.
Defense Ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanyan told RFE/RL’s Armenian service that 75 Armenian army soldiers will join thousands of Russian troops in marching through Red Square. She said they will carry not only an Armenian national flag but also the banner of a Red Army division that mostly consisted of Armenians and reached Berlin in May 1945.
Putin invited Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to attend the parade when they spoke by phone on Monday. Pashinyan accepted the invitation, saying that he hopes to recover from coronavirus by June 24.