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Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday vowed that “as in 1945, victory will be ours” as he congratulated former Soviet nations on the 77th anniversary of Nazi Germany’s defeat in World War II.

“Today, our soldiers, as their ancestors, are fighting side by side to liberate their native land from the Nazi filth with the confidence that, as in 1945, victory will be ours,” said Putin, who sent Russian troops into Ukraine in February.

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