Russian President Vladimir Putin showed off ballistic missiles, armored tanks and new aircraft systems at a World War II commemorative parade in Moscow on Tuesday.
More than 10,000 troops marched in formation through Red Square to mark Victory Day, an annual event to celebrate the Soviet Union’s triumph over Nazi Germany in a series of battles that ended on May 9, 1945.
Among more than 100 pieces of equipment put on display was an apparently new air defense division for operation in sub-zero Arctic conditions, state-run news agency Sputnik said. That included missile defense systems, bearing the image of an Arctic wolf.
Moscow has been conducting military activities in the Arctic, in a race with the United States, Canada and Norway to control the resource-rich area.
Yars intercontinental ballistic missiles were among more than 100 pieces of military equipment rolled through the square. The usual fly-past appeared to be canceled as thick clouds hovered over the Russian capital.
Russia is the world’s third largest military spender after the US and China. In 2016, Russia spent over $69 billion on its military.
In his remarks, Putin said that World War II taught Russia to be vigilant and ready for any assault. But he also called for international unity in the fight against terrorism.
“Our forces are capable of repelling any kind of attack, but to efficiently combat terrorism, Nazism, extremism, what we need is the consolidation of international community. We are strengthening that,” Putin said at the parade in Moscow’s Red Square.
“Russia will always be on the side in the world of those who fight against these scourges. Dear friends, as the Second World War recedes in history, we are obliged to make sure that stability throughout the world is observed.”
Russia is currently heavily involved in the Syrian conflict, using its air power to prop up the regime of embattled President Bashar al-Assad.
The country also sees the NATO alliance between the US and European nations as a regional military aggression.