Vladimir Putin meets with WWII veterans

Vladimir Putin Joins Veterans For Anniversary Of Nazi Invasion Of Soviet Union

Twenty-seven million Soviet people were killed after the Nazi offensive into the USSR in 1941.

Vladimir Putin meets with WWII veterans

Vladimir Putin has marked the anniversary of the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union by meeting with veterans in Moscow.

Russia's president laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Kremlin wall and greeted Second World War veterans.

He also visited a newly-built main military cathedral on Moscow’s western outskirts.

Nazi Germany invaded the USSR on 22 June 1941, starting nearly four years of fighting that killed 27 million Soviet people and left the western part of the country in ruins.

"It was a terrible and massive tragedy that claimed millions of lives, leaving behind devastation and irreparable pain of loss, deep never-healing wounds," Mr Putin said, addressing soldiers outside the cathedral.

Russian suffered 9,750,000 military deaths during the Second World War, while the UK and US figures stand at 383,600 and 416,800 respectively.

Victory Day on 9 May marks the Nazi defeat in the Second World War and is Russia’s most celebrated secular holiday.

Wednesday will see a military parade in the Moscow's Red Square, after original Victory Day events were postponed due to the coronavirus.

Cover image: TASS/PA.