Russia’s Lavrov Says May 9 Anniversary Will Not Affect Military Operations in Ukraine

The upcoming anniversary of Russia’s liberation at the end of World War II, on May 9, will not affect Moscow’s military operations in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Italian TV Mediaset on Sunday.

“Our soldiers will not base their actions on a specific date,” Lavrov said when asked whether May 9 would mark a milestone or turning point in the war.

“We will celebrate our victory in a solemn way, but the timing and speed of what is happening in Ukraine will depend on the need to minimize the risks to Russian civilians and soldiers,” he added.

Western governments and analysts predicted that Russian President Vladimir Putin intended to declare a victory in Ukraine in time for the May 9 commemorations, during which Russia holds its massive annual military parade.

Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on February 24, but its progress was stalled by Ukrainian resistance armed with Western military support.

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