Reactions to Putin's Victory Day speech

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By Reuters
Reactions to Putin's Victory Day speech
Reactions to Putin's Victory Day speech   -  Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2022

-Russian President Vladimir Putin evoked the memory of Soviet heroism in World War Two on Monday to urge his army towards victory in Ukraine, saying the West had been “preparing for the invasion of our land, including Crimea”.

Putin was speaking at the annual Victory Day parade on Moscow’s Red Square marking the anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in 1945.

Here is reaction to Putin’s speech:

Senior Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak:

NATO countries were not going to attack Russia. Ukraine did not plan to attack Crimea.”

British Defence Minister Ben Wallace:

“There can be no victory day, only dishonour and surely defeat in Ukraine… He (Putin) must come to terms with how he’s lost in the long run, and he’s absolutely lost. Russia is not what it was.”

Kira Yarmysh, exiled spokesperson for jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny, in a tweet:

“An old man, mad in his self-isolation, stands alone on the podium because no one came to be with him, coughs and says something about the Nazis of NATO. I don’t think even the most devoted Putin supporter will believe that this is an image of victory.”

Exiled critic of the Kremlin and former Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, in a tweet:

“Today is a holiday that I have been celebrating since childhood. On May 9, 1945, the Nazis who bombed Kyiv at 4 a.m. on June 22, 1941, capitulated. At 4 a.m. on February 24, 2022, under the signs of fascist evil spirits, Kyiv was again bombed. The descendants of some of the victors. Who have become fascists. Forget May 9. This is not your holiday.”

Allies of jailed political activist Andrei Pivovarov tweeted from his account: “Putin laid flowers at memorials to the Hero Cities of Kyiv and Odesa. No comment required.”

Gennady Gudkov, an exiled former lawmaker and member of the liberal opposition, tweeted:

“Putin repeated quotes from the zombie drawer, not daring anything more serious. So the Kremlin no longer has any tricks in store. Now Putin’s defeat is a matter of time!”

Michael McFaul, former U.S. ambassador to Russia, tweeted: On Victory Day, Putin is losing his war in Ukraine. Time for Russian soldiers to go home.

Russian satellite television menus were briefly altered to show viewers in Moscow messages about the war in Ukraine including: “You have blood on your hands”, “You have the blood of thousands of Ukrainians and hundreds of dead children on your hands”, “The TV and the authorities are lying. No to war.”