Russian President Vladimir Putin paid a visit to the headquarters of his country’s southern military district on Saturday and recorded a video message for the New Year.
Putin stated that “moral, historical righteousness is on our side” in the nine-minute recording, the longest New Year’s address of his presidency.
“It was a year filled with truly pivotal, fateful events. These events have become this frontier, laying the groundwork for our common future, our true independence,” he said, alluding to Russia’s war in Ukraine.
“It was a year of difficult but necessary decisions, the most important steps toward restoring Russia’s full sovereignty and the powerful consolidation of our society,” he added.
Putin recorded the speech at a military base in Rostov-on-Don.
During his visit on Saturday, Russian President Vladimir Putin met with army commanders and presented battle flags to new military formations. He also gave state awards to servicemen who demonstrated “courage and heroism” during Russia’s so-called “special military operation,” as Moscow refers to its invasion of Ukraine.