Russia’s defence ministry released on Thursday (May 5) footage of a night-time rehearsal of the country’s annual Victory Day parade – an annual commemoration of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in the Second World War.
Military personnel and military vehicles, including tanks and missile launchers, paraded on Wednesday evening through Moscow’s central Red Square in Moscow. Spectators were not allowed to watch the rehearsal.
This year’s parade on May 9 will take place against the backdrop of what Russia calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin is due to deliver a speech and oversees the military parade.
The Kremlin on Wednesday dismissed speculation Putin would formally declare war on Ukraine and decree a national mobilisation on the day of the parade.
Moscow on Wednesday pressed an offensive in eastern Ukraine, and close Russian ally Belarus announced large-scale snap army combat readiness drills.