Steph Deschamps / October 1, 2022
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday that Russia will win “victory” in its conflict with Ukraine, at a rally in Red Square in central Moscow celebrating the annexation of four Ukrainian territories.
Victory will be ours!” said the Russian president to the applause of a crowd of several thousand people. “Welcome home!” he said to the inhabitants of the annexed Ukrainian territories, considering that they had “returned to their historical homeland.”
“Russia does not only open the doors of its home for these people, it opens its heart,” he said from a stage specially installed on the iconic square at the foot of the Kremlin wall.
Among the crowd present, many Russian flags were waved, according to an AFP reporter. Some people also wore ribbons of St. George with black and orange stripes, an old tsarist military decoration that became a symbol of the victory of the Red Army over Nazi Germany.
Several large screens and a powerful sound system were also set up for people to watch the Russian president’s speech and several Russian music stars performing on the stage.
“We have become stronger because we are together,” said Putin, microphone in hand.
The Russian president spoke of a “special, historic day of truth and justice” at a time when Russian soldiers, he said, “heroically defend the choice of the people” in Ukraine.
“We will do everything to support our brothers and sisters in Zaporizhia, Kherson, Lugansk and Donetsk, to improve their security, revive the economy, build,” he also said, hours after signing the annexation of these four Ukrainian regions at a ceremony in the Kremlin.
Kiev and its Western supporters have widely condemned this annexation, with NATO calling it “illegitimate”. The G7 countries have indicated that they “will never recognize (these) so-called annexations.