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Kazakhstan celebrates 70th anniversary of Victory

The order of the Red Star. The order of the Red Star.

Today Kazakhstan celebrates one of the most important holidays – the Victory Day, which commemorates the end of the Great Patriotic War, as the WWII is known in the former Soviet states, and the win of the Soviet Union over the Nazi Germany, Tengrinews reports.

The Great Patriotic War started on June 22, 1941, when the Nazi forces invaded the Soviet Union, thus breaking the German-Soviet Nonaggression Pact, which the two countries signed on August 23, 1939 to make sure that neither of them would take any military action against each other during the next 10 years. The invasion of the fascist aggressors heralded the beginning of one of the largest battles in the history in terms of casualties.

During the War, along with all other 15 Soviet republics the Kazakh Soviet Republic was wholeheartedly engaged in the war effort. More than 1 million 200 thousand soldiers were mobilized from the republic. They formed 12 rifle and 4 cavalry divisions, 7 rifle brigades, and about 50 separate regiments and battalions.

A Kazakh soldier Rakhimzhan Koshkarbayev, who was the first officer along with Russian Gregory Bulatov to raise the Soviet Flag over the Reichstag building in Berlin on April 30, 1945.

The Nazi Germany planned to take over the Soviet Union by October 1941, but these plans were destined to fail. Not only the Soviet people withstanded the German attacks, but they won the battle. Germany finally capitulated on May 8, 1945, when it was already May 9 in Moscow because of the time difference.

Numerous festivities are taking place across Kazakhstan. An equestrian procession dedicated to the memory of the 106th National Cavalry Division walked the streets of Kazakhstan’s capital Astana on May 9. The procession started at the old square of the capital and proceed along Abai Avenue to Victory Avenue, passing along the 310th Infantry Division Street and finishing on the railway station forecourt.

In addition, crews of 84 military aircrafts and helicopters prepared a grand air show in Astana for the Victory Day celebrations.

There is also an exhibition of paintings by young artists dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the Victory, and an exhibition of folk art, books and weapons of the Great Patriotic War. 

Besides, the grand 70th Victory Day parade took place in Astana on May 7 in commemoration of the capitulation of Nazi Germany in 1945. The largest military parade in Kazakhstan’s history gathered over 5 thousand military personnel, 200 pieces of military equipment and 70 helicopters and military airplanes.

Almaty also celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Victory. The city's Akim (Mayor) Akhmetzhan Yesimov, veterans of war, representatives of the city branch of the Veterans Council, ethnic and cultural associations, Almaty residents and guests of the city attended the ceremony of laying flowers at the Eternal Flame in the 28 Panfilov Guardsmen Park.

A concert will be held at 8 p.m. at the Astana square followed by the fireworks show, which will go off from the square and from Lake Sairan.

On Friday, Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev laid flowers at the Fatherland Defenders’ monument in Astana to commemorate the victims of the war. The veterans also paid tribute to their fellow soldiers, who never returned home, with a minute of silence.

"We are a happy generation of the fathers who won the war. It is hard to imagine what would have happened to us if our fathers and grandfathers had not won the war. This is why, the veterans deserve every bit of attention on our part not only on the day of the holiday, but in everyday life, too," Nazarbayev said.

By Assel Satubaldina

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