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How Belarus celebrated 72nd anniversary of victory in WWII

May 9 is a great and historic Victory, a great historical date and a bright day of last week. Victory Day is celebrated in many countries of the world. Each in its own way, but one tradition unites people, because everywhere flowers and wreaths are brought to graves and obelisks. Evgeny Pustovoi has the report about the official celebrations and human memory.

This day, which still seems to smell of gunpowder, will never fade away and never become outdated in the minds of Belarusians.

We know how the Berlin operation ended, but we are ready to watch again and again how the world was conquering Nazism.

Mikhail Shashkov, a veteran of the Great Patriotic War:
Everything around was exultant. It was all green, flowers and people from old to young triumphed. Everyone laughed, and someone cried.

Dmitry Marchenko, veteran of the Great Patriotic War:
Sun is now looking at us from the sky again! Let it shine for us forever.

The smoke of an improvised battle for Berlin dissipates quickly in a peaceful sky. This sky is also sunny on Victory Day.

Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
In Moscow yesterday, everything was covered with snow, wet snow, and rain. See, we have good weather here in Belarus.

President Lukashenko made the general weather of the celebration. In the early 1990s, the atmosphere around 9 May was darkening like a front-line medal. But then the Belarusians got the Victory and now the May joy is shared by guests from different countries.

Passer:
This is an important holiday. This is Victory Day.

Russians even specifically pick date of their vacation to spend these days in Belarus.

Russians:
We arrived for all the May holidays, it's always a bright, beautiful, festive holiday.

The atmosphere is felt everywhere, people seem to carry it with themselves.

As soon as we drove along the highway, we felt and saw how you honor the memory of our grandfathers and great-grandfathers.

We have heard much about your holiday, how it passes and how it is held.

The memory of the war and respect for the Victory contributed to the construction of Belarusian peace.

Alexander Lukashenko:
Ukrainians came to us. Did they come because we ruined their house? No. They came to save themselves and save their families. They flee from the devastation in the East of Ukraine. They go to Belarus for salvation, they go to us as to a brotherly people. That's their mood.

Victory Day is celebrated in 30 countries. It is celebrated in different ways. In Belarus, you can hear: "We have survived! We won!" on every town square, in every village, and it each person's heart!

Alexander Lukashenko:
The crimes of the German Nazi invaders cannot be erased from the memory of people. Those who today are making attempts to rewrite history, to take away from our people the Great Victory should know this. We cannot allow this. And we will never stop admiring the courage of our fellow countrymen who passed through the hellish fire of war.

Traditionally May 9, all Belarusians are together. Secular and spiritual authorities, veterans and first-graders. And together with Belarusians is the whole world represented by ambassadors.

Usually the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs invites diplomats to the negotiating table. But on the eve of May 9, they were invited to take a tour of the museum of WWII under an open peaceful sky.

Vladimir Makei, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus:
May 8 and 9 were named by the General Assembly of the United Nations days of remembrance and reconciliation. Therefore, we invited them here to the Stalin Line, to touch our past, this bloody terrible part of our history.

Jose Boggiano Pericchi, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the Republic of Belarus:
You know, I am ready to take off my hat before the feat of the Belarusian people. And we are proud of your victory, and the fact that now your country plays an important role in international politics.

The promenade without ties again reminds both of the power of the Victory weapon, and of the strength of Belarusian diplomacy.

Igor Kizim, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine to the Republic of Belarus:
Negotiations are on. If people want, if countries want, they will do it. We have motivation. We do not need war on our land.

A German director is now directing a movie about the world of war. He shudders at fake shots and is amazed at the extent of the holiday. Not every nation has such a victory.

Sebastian Heinzel, director (Germany):
I came to you to shoot some parts of my film about the war. I arrived because we cannot have such a holiday. And this is understandable.

An improvised battle. Look at these kids making selfies against the background of guns. A real picture of peace.

Alexander Lukashenko:
In peacetime, guns must be covered. We can uncover them only during drills, which we do, by the way. And our people can be calm about this. We have everything to protect our patch of land on which our people live.

The Great Victory turned 72 this year. Although age is not important for such an event. It is more important that the youth is standing under the banners of its memory, that birds fill the peaceful shiny sky and a bouquet of fireworks light the night sky. Each volley has flower names - chrysanthemum or acacia... (please watch the video to see the fireworks).

How Belarus celebrated 72nd anniversary of victory in WWII