15:43 May. 6, 2016
Defence Minister says he will only attend 71st Victory Day celebrations that will take place in Poland
"All events marking the 71st Victory Day will take place in Poland," the Polish defence ministry told Gazeta Polska Codziennie. The paper reported that the governments of the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Lithuania have decided to follow suit.
The daily also quoted Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov, who told the Russian news agency TASS earlier this week that Moscow is not putting too much emphasis of the presence of many foreign delegations during this year's V-Day celebrations, as this is not what he called "a round anniversary".
"The Victory Day Parade will go on regardless of the presence of foreign dignitaries," Ushakov said.
The Victory Day Parade in Moscow's Red Square is the biggest parade showcasing Russia's military forces. It commemorates the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945 through a series of parades that occur simultaneously in over 20 major Russian cities.
Earlier this week Lithuania's Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius has confirmed that no diplomatic representative from Lithuania will attend Russia's Victory Day parade on May 9. Lithuania refused to take part in a parade since Russia started its occupation of Ukrainian lands.