October 28, 2011

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Russian Marines March Along Side Greek Soldiers on OXI Day!

A few kilometres from the Turkish border the two largest armies of Orthodoxy, Greek and Russian, today marched along side each other for the first time in history. Russia’s (LST) Tsesar Kunikof, a forerunner landing warship, is Greece and today its marines marched along side of their Greek counterparts in this year's October 28th “OXI” parade and gave spectators quite a show! The move also sent a clear message to Turkey that they will stand by Greece’s side when needed.

The Russian marines belong to the landing craft (LST) Tsesar Kunikof, which dropped anchor in the port of Alexandroupolis, a precursor of the Battle Group aircraft carrier "Admiral Kuznetsov", which is one of the grandest warships of its sort and which will be in the Eastern Mediterranean in late November.

The Tsesar Kunikof, is a relatively modern landing craft it is run by 150 Russian marines and tens of TOMATO wheeled BTR-80s including the rare version SHORAD with missiles SA-16, BRDM etc..

Unlike other Greek cities where demonstrations instead of parades took place today, Alexandroupolis residents flooded the streets to admire this unique event.

According to history, Dedeagatch was captured by the Russians during the Russo–Turkish War of 1877–1878, and Russian forces settled in the village. The officers in charge saw that reconstruction incorporated wide streets running parallel to each other, allowing the quick advance of troops, and avoided cul-de-sacs. This was very unlike the narrow alleys, cobbled streets, and dead-ends that were characteristic of Ottoman cities at the time. The city returned to Ottoman control by the end of the war, but the brief Russian presence had a lasting effect on the design and architecture of the city and especially the streets of Alexandroupolis.

Also, during the visit, a friendly soccer match will be held between Russian marines and Hellenic soldiers from the 12th Infantry Division.

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