While violence again broke out in eastern Ukraine on Friday, Victory Day in Kyiv was a relatively subdued affair. A few veterans visited Maidan, where they were greeted by residents who wanted to chat about politics and war. One elderly veteran simply wanted to share his secret to longevity: Don’t drink, don’t smoke, eat right.
Others gathered at the World War II monument in Victory Park to lay flowers and pay respects to those lost in battle. Ukrainians were urged to wear red poppies, which are commonly worn in Europe, rather than the Saint George ribbon, which is traditionally worn in the former Soviet Union.