· Six Russian regions, occupied Crimea, and 21 cities have cancelled their 09 May Victory Day parades citing security concerns. Victory Day commemorates the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany. Moscow's Victory Day celebration is likely to go ahead but on a smaller scale. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s reception following the parade (last held in 2019) will not go ahead.
· The traditional March of the Immortal Regiment, where family members display photographs of deceased veterans of the Second World War, associated with Victory Day, has also been cancelled. This follows the recent cancellation of the Russian-hosted International Army Games.
· The timing of the UAV strike on the Kremlin a few days before Victory Day shows Russia’s increasing vulnerability to such attacks and has almost certainly raised the threat perception of the Russian leadership over the Victory Day events. The potential for protests and discontent over the Ukraine war are also likely to have influenced the calculus of the Russian leadership.
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