Victory Day or 9 May marks the capitulation of Nazi Germany to the Soviet Union in the Second World War (also known as the Great Patriotic War in the Soviet Union and most post-Soviet states). It was first inaugurated in the fifteen republics of the Soviet Union, following the signing of the surrender document late in the evening on 8 May 1945 (after midnight, thus on 9 May, by Moscow Time). The Soviet government announced the victory early on 9 May after the signing ceremony in Berlin. Though the official inauguration happened in 1945 (which means it has been celebrated since 1946), the holiday became a non-labour day only in 1965 and only in some of the countries.
In communist East Germany, a Soviet-style “Victory Day” on 9 May was an official holiday from 1975 until the end of the republic in 1990. Prior to that, “Liberation Day” was celebrated on 8 May, between 1950 and 1966, and again on the 40th anniversary in 1985. Since 2002, the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern has observed a commemoration day known as the “Day of Liberation from National Socialism, and the End of the Second World War”.
In 1988, before the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Victory Day ceased to be observed in Uzbekistan, but was partially restored in 1999 as Memorial/Remembrance Day. After their separation from the Soviet Union, the Baltic countries now commemorate the end of WWII on 8 May, the Victory in Europe Day. But many people in Baltic countries still gather to celebrate the Victory Day on 9 May.