Russian jets form 'Z' in Victory Day flyby rehearsal

STORY: The 'Z' symbol is associated with what Russia calls its "special military operation" in Ukraine and has become a symbol of the ongoing conflict, which Kyiv and the West see as an act of aggression.

A series of plane formations could be seen flying over the Russian capital ahead of Victory Day celebrations held annually in Russia on May 9 to mark the country's victory over Nazi Germany in the Second World War.

The letter 'Z' was initially seen painted on the side of military vehicle, but can now be seen widely in Russia, including on official buildings, regular Russians' cars and on social media as a display of support for Russia's offensive.

Victory Day is one of the most important public holidays for many Russians and has traditionally seen Russia show off its military might with convoys of vehicles, weaponry and troops parading across Moscow's Red Square.

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