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In Photos: Russia Marks 80th Anniversary of Stalingrad Victory

Russian officials and citizens staged a number of events this week to mark the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Stalingrad — a key World War II battle that saw Soviet forces beat back invading Nazi troops — as the war in Ukraine neared its one-year mark.

The battle, which lasted from August 1942 to February 1943, claimed an estimated 2 million lives. It continues to hold great significance for many Russians as a major victory that helped pave the way to the Nazis' defeat in 1945.

Many of the commemorations took place in the city of Volgograd, which had been named Stalingrad from 1925 to 1961 after Soviet dictator Josef Stalin.

Here's a look at some of the events taking place surrounding the anniversary: