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Russia Marks Red Army's Centenary

Members of Trotsky's Red Army stand on guard duty in Moscow's Red Square in November 1922.

Russia has been marking its Day of the Fatherland's Defender, which also coincides with the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Red Army.

The Red Army, established by the Bolsheviks in 1918, became the Soviet Army in 1946, after the end of World War II.

During Soviet times, February 23 used to be called the Day of the Soviet Army and Navy, and was renamed Day of the Fatherland's Defender in 2002, more than 10 years after the Soviet Union's collapse in 1991.

In a solemn ceremony, Russian President Vladimir Putin laid flowers on the grave of the Unknown Soldier near the Kremlin.

The ceremony was also attended by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, and the speakers of both chambers of Parliament, Valentina Matviyenko and Vyacheslav Volodin.

Communists and other leftist organizations marched in downtown Moscow to mark the occasion.

The Red Army was officially established just several months after the Vladimir Lenin-led Bolshevik party came to power on November 7, 2017.

Based on reporting by TASS and Interfax