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MOSCOW, March 02, /ITAR-TASS/. About 20,000 people are taking part in a rally in support of Russian compatriots in Ukraine, which is underway in central Moscow, the press service of the Moscow police department told Itar-Tass on Sunday.
The march started from the Pushkin Square. Participants are walking along the Boulevard Ring to Sakharov Avenue.
“More and more people are joining the march,” the police said.
The Sunday march was organized by the Russian Society of Military History, the Officers of Russia public movement and patriotic organizations.
The action was sanctioned by the Moscow authorities, which will stop traffic in a number of Moscow’s central streets.
According to Sergei Machinsky, a representative from the Russian Society of Military History, at least 10,000 are taking part in the march. People are carrying state flags, flags of patriotic organizations and movements, and historic flags of Ukrainian Fronts of the period of WWII.
Participants express their solidarity with the Ukrainian people. “We want to remind all Ukrainians that some 70 years ago we defeated fascism together, and we don’t want to see it flourishing in Ukraine,” participants in the march say.
The rally will finish with a rally in Sakharov Avenue.
“We want to support our brotherly Ukrainian people in the time of trouble. We want to support all people who speak the Russian language, regardless of their nationality,” head of the executive committee of the All-Russia Popular Front, Hero of Russia Andrei Bocharov told Itar-Tass. “We want to support our compatriots living in Ukraine and want to say that we will not let them in trouble.”
The action will be a “demonstration of the consolidation of Russian political forces,” said Anatoly Akulov, the chairman of the central board of the Russian Party of Pensioners for Justice. “We are a patriotic force, which first of all advocates the interest of pensioners, people of the elder generation, veterans, including those living in Ukraine and Crimea. So, we cannot be indifferent to their fate.”
Earlier on Sunday, an action in support of Russian compatriots in Ukraine brought together about 15,000 people in Russia’s second largest city of St. Petersburg.