Immortal Regiment March to Go Virtual in 2024 Amid Security Concerns

The Immortal Regiment march, a patriotic Russian Victory Day celebration, will be held online in 2024 due to security concerns amid the ongoing conflict, reflecting a shift in how Russia commemorates WWII.

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Ayesha Mumtaz
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Immortal Regiment March to Go Virtual in 2024 Amid Security Concerns

Immortal Regiment March to Go Virtual in 2024 Amid Security Concerns

The Immortal Regiment march, a traditional Victory Day celebration in Russia, will be held online in 2024 due to safety concerns, as decided by the movement's headquarters.

This decision follows the cancellation of Victory Day celebrations in six Russian regions, including Kursk, Bryansk, Belgorod, Ryazan, and Pskov, to avoid provoking the enemy with gatherings of military equipment and personnel.

Elena Tsunayeva, the first deputy chairman of the State Duma Committee on Labor, Social Policy and Veterans' Affairs, stated that the march was canceled "due to threats to public security." The Immortal Regiment march has also been called off in other cities across Russia, after the cancellation of May 9 parades in 23 Russian regions in 2023.

The decision to hold the 2024 march online was made by the central headquarters of the Immortal Regiment movement, citing "existing threats to public safety" following an increase in Ukrainian drone and missile attacks, as well as a deadly attack claimed by Islamic State-linked militants. Authorities in Saint Petersburg also announced the march will be held online.

Why this matters: The Immortal Regiment march, promoted by the Kremlin under Vladimir Putin, has been a patriotic event where Russians across the country parade through cities holding portraits of their relatives killed in World War II. The move to an online format in 2024 reflects growing security concerns and a shift in how Russia commemorates the war amid ongoing conflicts.

The scale of May holiday events in Russia has decreased significantly over the past two years of war, with 2.5 times less military equipment participating in the Victory Parade compared to the pre-war period. Several regions, including border areas that have been subject to attacks by Ukrainian drones, have also canceled parades and fireworks displays on Victory Day. Traditional May demonstrations have been called off in several cities as well.

Organizers propose holding the event in alternative formats in 2024, such as displaying portraits of war heroes on public transport, water and aviation transport, as well as in public places like parks and gardens.

Requests have been sent to 60 countries to hold the march in accordance with their current legislation, and the march will still take place in more than 100 countries. However, the march will not be held in Crimea due to security issues, though plans are in place to honor the memory of the dead and congratulate veterans on Victory Day.

Key Takeaways

  • Immortal Regiment march in Russia to be held online in 2024 due to security concerns.
  • Victory Day celebrations canceled in 6 Russian regions to avoid provoking the enemy.
  • Immortal Regiment march also canceled in other Russian cities due to security threats.
  • Scale of May holiday events in Russia has decreased significantly over the past 2 years.
  • Organizers propose alternative formats for the 2024 march, including displaying portraits in public.