Children in southern Russia put on WWII Victory Day parade

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ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia (AP) — Hundreds of children have walked past medal-bedecked Russian veterans in a parade marking the 70th anniversary of the Nazis' defeat in World War II.

Thursday's parade in the city of Rostov-on-Don, 100 kilometers (60 miles) east of the Ukraine border, featured preschoolers riding three-wheeled bikes while older children up to age 11 marched in columns. The show, held here for the sixth straight year, involved about 500 children.

Col. Sergey Menshikov of the Southern Military District that helped organize the show said it encouraged patriotic feelings.

The Rostov-on-Don celebration follows a massive military parade last Saturday on Red Square, the largest such show since the Soviet times.

Victory Day is Russia's most important secular holiday, reflecting the nation's enormous losses and suffering in the war.

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