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Russia Takes Victory Day Parade to Crimea

The lead ship of the Project 1164 Atlanta class of guided missile cruisers in the Russian Navy.

More than 1,300 servicemen and 30 military vehicles took part in the Victory Day parade in the Crimean port of Sevastopol, Russian state news agency Interfax reported.

The parade included S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems and other hardware, namely Russia's newest armored vehicles, Interfax reported Monday.

World War II veterans also marched through Sevastopol's central streets. A similar parade took place in the Crimean city of Kerch.

According to Sevastopol's local news website, thousands of people from Crimea and Ukraine gathered to watch maritime maneuvers in Sevastopol Bay, the city's harbor. They were reportedly able to take boat rides to observe the ships and a Russian submarine, docked in the area, up close.

Russian ships lined up in Sevastopol Bay as part of the parade festivities. According to Interfax, tens of thousands of onlookers gathered for the event, with Vice Admiral Alexander Vitko, commander of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, directing the ceremony. Vitko said that the Black Sea Fleet made a worthwhile contribution to victory over the Nazis, state news agency TASS reported.

Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine in 2014 following a controversial referendum. Neither Western countries nor Ukraine officially recognize the peninsula as part of Russia. In late April, Kiev issued an arrest warrant for Alexander Vitko.

He is under suspicion of committing serious crimes against Ukraine and of hiding from investigative authorities.

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