Russia Invites Obama to WWII Commemorations in Moscow

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Russia has invited U.S. President Barack Obama to Moscow next year to mark the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Union's victory over Nazi Germany in World War II, a Kremlin adviser said.

Asked by reporters whether Obama was on the guest list for the May 9 commemorations, Yuri Ushakov, one of President Vladimir Putin's top aides, said: "Of course."

"Invitations were sent on the basis of the list of the previous victory anniversary," Ushakov said.

"Naturally, all countries that took part in the anti-Hitler coalition are invited," he said, adding that Russia's "closest allies", including its BRICS partners Brazil, India, China and South Africa, were also among the "large number" of invitees.

Ushakov confirmed that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un -- whose government is locked in a war of words with the United States over a cyber attack on Sony Pictures blamed on Pyongyang -- had also been invited to the ceremonies.

Russia marks the victory of the Soviet Union over Nazi Germany with an annual military parade on Red Square aimed at showcasing Russia's military might.

The invitation to Obama comes amid a deep chill in relations between Russia and the West, triggered by Russia's annexation of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine and its support for a rebellion in the country's east.

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