Lukashenka to attend Russia’s rescheduled Victory Day parade

Alyaksandr Lukashenka has accepted an invitation to the Victory Parade in Moscow, RIA Novosti reports with reference to Russia’s Ambassador to Belarus Dmitry Mezentsev.

The event is scheduled for June, 24. Belarusian military are also expected to take part in it.

According to the top diplomat, Lukashenka’s decision confirms ‘the unity of our two fraternal states’ approaches to appraising the feat of the Soviet people, soldiers of the Great Patriotic War’.

Dmitry Mezentsev also thanked the Belarusian leader for his readiness to show up at the celebration. In his opinion, this is another example of ‘the close historical relationship and the strategy of cooperation’ between Moscow and Minsk, which ‘cannot be hindered by any disputes between economic entities’.

Tanks and fireworks: Belarus gearing up for Victory Parade amid pandemic

During Tuesday’s visit to Hrodna. Alyaksandr Lukashenka noted the difficult situation with the coronavirus in Russia.

“The Belarusians held the parade on 9 May, and Russia not. They want to do it now. But the situation is very difficult, and we of course are taking precautions so that this does not come back to us,” state-run news agency BelTA quotes him.

In late May, Vladimir Putin announced staging the Victory Parade in Moscow. The new date was not chosen by chance: it was June 24th, 1945, when the Victory Parade took place, when soldiers who fought near Moscow, Leningrad, Stalingrad and in Europe passed through Red Square, he said. Earlier, the event had to be postponed due to the outbreak of COVID-19.

In turn, Belarus’ president decided against cancelling a Victory parade in Minsk although the WHO and other experts had warned that organising mass events in a current epidemiological situation might result in its deterioration. On May 9, the event was attended by about 15,000 spectators. Even the idea to change the traditional format of the Victory Day was ‘unacceptable’, he stressed. Following the celebration, Lukashenka claimed that Belarus recorded a decline in pneumonia.

‘Brave decision’: WHO rep thanks post-Soviet leaders for cancelling Victory parades