BAKU, Azerbaijan, May 9. On the occasion of the Victory Day over the Nazis, a group of soldiers visited the grave of Hazi Aslanov [Azerbaijani major-general] and laid flowers at his monument, Trend reports via the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry.
During the WWII, somewhere between 600,000 and 800,000 Azerbaijanis fought for the Soviet military forces. Azerbaijani troops played a large role in the Defense of Brest Fortress, the Siege of Leningrad, the Battle of Moscow, the Battle of Stalingrad, the Battle of Kursk, and the Battle of Berlin. Azerbaijan played a major role in the Battle of the Caucasus with Azerbaijani civilians providing resistance to the Germans.
Also, Azerbaijan’s oil was a very decisive factor for the Soviet Union's victory.
A total of 128 residents of Azerbaijan were awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union for military valor and feats shown during World War II, of which 42 were ethnic Azerbaijani; 14 of the titles were awarded posthumously. Lieutenant Israfil Mammadov was the first Azerbaijani awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union. Major-General Hazi Aslanov received the title twice.
After the war, Azerbaijan remained under Soviet control until the new Republic of Azerbaijan became independent in 1991.
Currently, 51 participants of the Second World War live in Azerbaijan.