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Vladimir Putin spent a day in Baltiisk

July 30, 2000, The Kaliningrad Region

During the trip, which was timed to coincide with Navy Day, Mr Putin laid a wreath at a monument to Soviet sailors killed during the capture of Baltiisk, formerly called Pillau, a major German naval base, in the Great Patriotic War. The Commander-in-Chief congratulated Navy sailors on Navy Day and watched a parade of Baltic Fleet units on Baltic Glory Square.

President Putin presented orders and medals to distinguished navy officers aboard the destroyer Nastoichivy. The destroyer’s crew also received “holy relics”, i.e. banners and standards of the Russian Imperial Navy, which were returned to Mr Putin by Greek President Konstantinos Stephanopoulos during their June summit in Moscow.

Vladimir Putin said aboard the destroyer that the state would work hard to promote the development of the Navy. He stressed that Russia had always treated the Navy and its sailors in a special way and had always been proud of them. Mr Putin also said that the history of the Russian state and the Navy had always been inter-linked.

Mr Putin told journalists after the celebrations that Russia could not exist without the Navy, especially if it wanted to remain a great power and a prosperous and mighty country.

On July 30, the President also sent a message congratulating Russian Navy personnel and veterans on Navy Day.

July 30, 2000, The Kaliningrad Region