Vladimir Putin cordially congratulated participants in the meeting on Defender of the Fatherland Day, and wished them success in their professional careers.
Mr Putin said that in 2000 Russia was going to observe a big holiday, the 55th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic War. He urged all those present to celebrate this event at top level and promised to invite war veterans from all parts of Russia to the festivities in Red Square.
The Acting President said the veterans of the Great Patriotic War would be given an additional bonus of three minimal pensions. He also promised support for workers of the home front and the widows of officers and men who perished during the Great Patriotic War. Mr Putin emphasized that the government should upgrade the veterans’ living standards.
The meeting’s participants included Army General, Hero of the Soviet Union, and President of the National Association of Heroes of the Soviet Union, Heroes of the Russian Federation, and Holders of the Order of Glory of three classes Valentin Varennikov; Army General and Chairman of the National Public Organization of War and Military Service Veterans Vladimir Govorov; Hero of the Soviet Union and Defence Ministry adviser, Marshal of the Soviet Union Viktor Kulikov; Hero of the Soviet Union and First Deputy Chairman of the National Public Organisation of War and Military Service Veterans Alexei Maresyev; Chairman of the Federal Security Service Veterans’ Council Col.-Gen. Vladimir Pirozhkov; Chairman of the Veterans’ Council of Law-Enforcement Bodies and Interior Troops Militia Col-Gen. Boris Shumilin; and Defence Ministry advisor, Marshal of the Soviet Union Dmitry Yazov.
Defence Minister Igor Sergeyev, Interior Minister Vladimir Rushailo, Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Alexander Voloshin, Moscow Region Governor Boris Gromov, and Ingush President Ruslan Aushev also attended the meeting.