Russia's Lavrov says May 9 not a relevant date for Ukraine operations

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres visits Moscow
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaks during a news conference after his meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in Moscow, Russia, April 26, 2022. Maxim Shipenkov/Pool via REUTERS

MILAN, May 1 (Reuters) - The upcoming anniversary of Russia's liberation at the end of World War II will have no bearing on Moscow's military operations in Ukraine, the country's foreign minister said on Italian television on Sunday.

"Our soldiers won't base their actions on a specific date," Sergei Lavrov said when asked whether the May 9 anniversary would mark a turning point in the conflict.

"We'll commemorate our victory in a solemn manner but the timing and speed of what is happening in Ukraine will hinge on the need to minimise risks for civilians and Russian solders," he added, speaking in Russian through an Italian interpreter.

Reporting by Gavin Jones and Valentina Za

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