President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Comrades,
Today, standing here on the historic Cathedral Square of the Moscow Kremlin are the service personnel of the Russian Federation Armed Forces, soldiers and officers of the National Guard, the Federal Security Service, the Interior Ministry and the Federal Guard Service. They are the ones who, together with their comrades-in-arms, at a time of challenge for the country, threw themselves in the way of trouble which would have inevitably led to chaos.
You have defended the constitutional order, as well as the life, security and freedom of our citizens, steering our Motherland clear from upheavals and de facto stopping a civil war in its tracks.
In that complicated situation, you acted in a firm and coordinated manner, proving your commitment to the people of Russia and to your military oath through your actions and showing responsibility for the destiny and future of Russia.
Defence Ministry units, the National Guard, officers of the Interior Ministry and special services ensured reliable operation of all critical decision-making bodies, strategic facilities, including the defence ones, ensured the security of border regions, the rear lines of our Armed Forces, of all combat units which carried on with their heroic frontline operations during that time. We did not have to withdraw any combat troops from the special military operation zone.
Our comrades-in-arms – pilots – lost their lives while confronting the mutineers. They held their ground and fulfilled their orders and their military duty with honour. I am asking you to observe a minute of silence in tribute to their memory.
(Minute of silence.)
Your resolve and courage, along with consolidation of Russian society, played an essential and decisive role in bringing the situation back to normal. Those who were drawn into the mutiny saw that the army and the people were not with them.
The swift and well-managed deployment of defence, security and law enforcement units helped prevent the situation in the country from going down a very dangerous road and ensure that there were no civilian casualties.
I extend my gratitude to you and all the personnel of the Armed Forces, law enforcement agencies and security services for your service, courage and valour, for your devotion to the people of Russia.
(National anthem of Russia.)
Best of luck to you. Thank you.