- Vladimir Putin compared the current Russian invasion of Ukraine to the fight against Nazi Germany.
- Kremlin spokesperon Dmitry Peskov suggested Russia will strengthen defences, in light of Western countries sending weapons and aid to the Kyiv government.
- The Battle of Stalingrad was a turning point in WWII and saw over 1 million people killed.
- Putin has falsely flamed the invasion as a battle against nationalists and Nazis.
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called on the EU to impose sanctions and set a goal to defeat the Russian invasion in the next year.
- The commemoration of the Battle of Stalingrad reminds of the devastation of conflict and the need for peaceful resolution.
Vladimir Putin Vows to Defend Russia in Speech to Mark 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Stalingrad.
On the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Stalingrad, Vladimir Putin used a speech to warn of a potential equal battle against Nazi Germany.
Putin compared Russia’s present invasion of Ukraine to the fight against Nazi Germany and suggested he could seek to move beyond conventional weapons in response to Western countries sending weapons and aid to the Kyiv government.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov declined to expand on Putin’s comments, yet suggested “as new weapons are received by the Western countries, Russia will strengthen its use of its potential to respond.”
The Battle of Stalingrad
The Battle of Stalingrad took place between 17 July 1942 and 2 February 1943 and saw the Soviet army capture 91,000 German troops, temporarily turning the tide of the war.
Over 1 million people tragically perished in the battle – the bloodiest of World War Two.
Putin has repeatedly inaccurately purported Russia’s invasion to be a battle against nationalists and Nazis in Ukraine.
As part of the commemoration, Volgograd was temporarily renamed Stalingrad, while a new bust of Joseph Stalin, the former leader of the Soviet Union, was unveiled earlier this week.
Stalin was accused of orchestrating the Ukrainian Holodomor in 1932-33, a devastating famine that led to the deaths of an estimated 5 million people and was recognised as a genocide in Bulgaria.
Putin visited the main memorial complex in Volgograd and held a moment of silence for those who died in the Battle of Stalingrad.
Thousands of Volgograd residents lined the city’s streets to watch a military parade, with contemporary and World War Two-era tanks rolling through the centre of the city.
In response to these events, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that Russia is “preparing to take revenge” on the West for their help to Ukraine and called on leaders of the European Union to impose further sanctions on the Russian economy.
Zelensky set a goal for Ukrainian forces to defeat the Russian invasion in the next year.
The commemoration of the Battle of Stalingrad serves as an important reminder of the devastation of global conflict, and of the urgency of seeking a peaceful resolution to all conflicts.
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