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Russia's Putin Commemorates Victory Over Japan In Chita

Russian President Vladimir Putin has joined veterans for a ceremony commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

Putin made a brief stop in Chita, a Siberian city near the Chinese border, where he attended a military parade and laid a wreath at a war memorial on September 2.

The Russian president later headed to Beijing, where he is to attend a military parade on September 3 commemorating Japan's surrender to the Allies in 1945.

In Moscow, Communists commemorated the end of the war by laying flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

A dispute over the Kuril Islands, which Russia seized from Japan at the end of World War II, has strained ties and has kept the two countries from signing a peace treaty.

Based on reporting by AP and TASS