- Created on Wednesday, 09 May 2012 15:06
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Vladimir Putin, reinstalled as Russian president, has told the annual World War II Victory parade in Red Square that Russia will stand up for itself.
Flanked by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, he addressed a military parade that included nuclear-tipped missiles and 14,000 service personnel.
Having borne the brunt of the Nazi onslaught, he said, Russia had a "moral right" to uphold its positions.
"We will always be true to your feat," he told veterans.
He did not specify which "positions" were in question. Russia and China have recently been at odds with other world powers over how to resolve the crisis in Syria.
Mr Putin was inaugurated on Monday for a third term in the Kremlin after winning an election in March, which was marred by allegations of ballot-rigging.
His predecessor and long-time protege, Mr Medvedev, became prime minister on Tuesday to renewed protests by the Russian opposition.
Russia's most prominent opposition leader, lawyer Alexei Navalny, was detained early on Wednesday, on a charge of disobeying police.
Writing on Twitter from custody, the blogger sent Victory Day congratulations to his fellow Russians and a photo of his grandfather's Soviet medal for valour in World War II.
"So I won't get home for Victory Day," he tweeted. "They're taking my laces and belt."