World Putin vows to defend ‘Russian interests’ on WWII Victory Day
Alexei Navalny Lieutenant Warns Joe Biden Off Trusting Vladimir Putin's Word
Leonid Volkov said Putin has not met his international obligations before and any new agreements should take that into account.A Biden-Putin meeting has been touted for June but would be set against a backdrop of relations soured by tit-for-tat sanctions and the case of Kremlin scourge Nalvalny, who is serving a 2.5-year jail term in a penal colony, where he has ended a hunger strike.
President Vladimir Putin says his country will “firmly” defend Russia’s national interests, denouncing the return of “Russophobia” and warning of a revival of Nazism.
Putin’s speech on Sunday came at the start of an annual parade that sees military hardware roll through the streets of Moscow. More than 12,000 military personnel took part in the march, as well as some 190 pieces of military equipment and 76 fighter jets and helicopters.
How China could force Biden’s hand on defending Taiwan
A war over Taiwan may lead Biden to a decision no American president since 1979 has wanted to make.The outgoing commander of US forces in the Indo-Pacific region, Navy Adm. Philip Davidson, told US lawmakers in March that he believes Beijing will attempt a takeover of the neighboring democratic island — which it considers part of mainland China — within the next six years. Davidson’s successor, Navy Adm. John Aquilino, expressed a similar concern days later.
The parade marked the 76th anniversary of victory in World War II over Nazi Germany.
“The Soviet people kept their sacred oath, defended the homeland, and freed the countries of Europe from the black plague,” Putin told the crowd.
“Russia consistently defends international law. At the same time, we will firmly defend our national interests to ensure the safety of our people.”
The Russian leader condemned what he called a creeping return of ideologies of the time, when “slogans of racial and national superiority, of anti-Semitism, and Russophobia became ever more cynical”.
“Unfortunately, many of the ideologies of the Nazis – those who were obsessed with the delusional theory of their exclusiveness – are again trying to be put into service,” Putin said.
Vladimir Putin Calls Russia's COVID Vaccine as 'Reliable as a Kalashnikov Assault Rifle'
The Russian president defended the Sputnik V vaccine after an annual vaccine conference named Moderna's jab the best in the world.Putin was quoted by Interfax, an independent Russian news agency, as saying the Russian vaccines "are very modern and without a doubt the most reliable and the safest today.
Victory Day parades – which only became an annual event after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and have taken on increasing importance in projecting Russia’s renewed military might during Putin’s two decades in power – also took place in dozens of cities across the nation.
Tensions with the West
Sunday’s commemorations came as Russia in recent weeks has seen its diplomats expelled from a clutch of European countries over espionage scandals, while the United States and the European Union have levied new sanctions on Moscow over the treatment of jailed Kremlin critic Alexey Navalny and allegations of hacking and cyberattacks.
Tensions have also soared over the conflict in eastern Ukraine, which erupted after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014 and where Moscow is widely seen as backing pro-Russia separatists.
Clashes between the government and separatists have been intensifying since January in a conflict that has claimed more than 13,000 lives.
Russia last month amassed 100,000 troops near Ukraine’s borders and in Crimea, its biggest buildup since 2014, though it announced a drawdown in what many saw as a test for new US President Joe Biden.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken flew to Kyiv last week in a show of support for Ukraine before an expected summit between Putin and Biden next month.
On Saturday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy travelled with European diplomats to the pro-Russian breakaway eastern region of Lugansk to commemorate the end of WWII.
Russia seeks to outlaw Navalny movement .
A Russian court is set to hear an "extremism" case against the political network of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny on Monday as Moscow seeks to outlaw the opposition to President Vladimir Putin. The closed court hearing is part of a sweeping crackdown on Putin's most prominent critic and his supporters after Navalny barely survived a poisoning with the Novichok nerve agent last summer. As part of the effort -- which comes a few months before parliamentary elections -- the lower house is set on Tuesday to begin debating a bill banning members of "extremist" organisations from being elected lawmakers.