Europe

In pictures: Russia's Victory Day and Ukraine clashes

  • 9 May 2014
  • From the section Europe

Russia has been parading its military might in Moscow's Red Square and Sevastopol in Crimea, amid an expanded Victory Day celebrating the Soviet Union's victory in World War Two. Meanwhile, violence has broken out in Ukraine's Mariupol between separatists and troops.

Russian servicemen march during the Victory Day parade in Moscow's Red Square, 9 May 2014
Thousands of troops marched through Moscow's Red Square on Friday in a show of military might.
Russian military aircraft trail smoke in the colours of the Russian tricolour above the Victory Day Parade in Moscow's Red Square, 9 May 2014
Patriotism is surging after Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in March. Here, military aircraft trail smoke in the colours of the Russian flag.
Russian servicemen onboard self-propelled artillery vehicles salute during the Victory Day Parade in Moscow's Red Square, 9 May 2014
The parade lasted longer than usual, and 50 more military vehicles were on display compared with the previous year.
Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives to attend a Victory Day parade, which commemorates the 1945 defeat of Nazi Germany, in Moscow, Russia, 9 May 2014
In a speech, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the holiday celebrated the triumph of "all-conquering patriotic force" and he stressed "loyalty to the motherland and how important it is to defend its interests".
Russian servicemen march during the Victory Day parade in Moscow's Red Square, 9 May 2014
He made no mention during the parade of the unrest in neighbouring Ukraine, which Moscow has been accused of fostering. Moscow denies the claims.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (right), Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu (left) and Black Sea fleet commander Vice Admiral Aleksander Vitko watch events to mark Victory day in Sevastopol, Crimea, 9 May 2014
But after the parade, Mr Putin made his first visit to Crimea since it became part of Russia. He addressed sailors from a boat in Sevastopol harbour before landing at the quayside to speak to the waiting crowds.
Russian Black Sea fleet sailors salute during the Victory Day military parade, which commemorates the 1945 defeat of Nazi Germany, in Sevastopol, Russia, 9 May 2014
Kiev criticised Mr Putin's visit, saying it ignored Ukraine's sovereignty. Nato also described Mr Putin's trip as "inappropriate", and said it did not recognise Russia's annexation of Crimea.
Smoke rises from burnt barricades in front of the police headquarters in the south-eastern port city of Mariupol, 9 May 2014
Meanwhile, fighting broke out between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian rebels in the southern Ukrainian city of Mariupol as soldiers tried to retake the police headquarters.
People climb a broken armoured vehicle left behind after Ukrainian forces attacked police headquarters in an attempt to drive out pro-Russian militants in Mariupol, 9 May 2014
Tanks could be seen on the streets of Mariupol, and television footage showed civilians trying to block armoured vehicles. Here, people can be seen climbing onto a broken armoured vehicle left behind by Ukrainian forces.
A masked man jumps over a burning barricade in front of the police headquarters in the south-eastern port city of Mariupol, 9 May 2014
At least 20 pro-Russia protesters and one Ukrainian security officer were killed in the clashes, Ukraine's interior minister said.