The first evacuees from the ruins of the Mariúpol steelworks will soon arrive in the city of Zaporizhiacontrolled by Ukraine, after having sheltered for weeks in underground bunkers in the face of Russian bombing.
The extensive industrial complex of Azovstalin the port city on the Sea of Azov and devastated by weeks of Russian bombardment, has served as a haven for both civilians and a dwindling number of Ukrainian troops, as Moscow has claimed control of Mariupol.
The United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross launched a coordinated operation with Ukraine and Russia on April 29 to remove women, children and the elderly from steel mills.
the ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, has tweeted that a hundred civilians would arrive in Zaporizhia, in southeastern Ukraine, on Monday. “For the first time, we have had two days of ceasefire in this territory and we have managed to remove more than 100 civilians, women, children,” she said.
on your own
Some evacuees who had not taken refuge in the steel mill have also arrived in Zaporizhia after traveling from Mariupol independently of the UN operation and the Red Cross. A woman, who has arrived in a funeral van, has stated that she had left Mariupol some time ago and that she had hidden in a cellar in a nearby town.
another convoy carrying civilians from Mariupol, but not from Azovstalalso left the city for Zaporizhia in the morning, according to Petro Andryushchenkoassistant to the mayor, to Ukrainian television.
There is no indication of the existence of a withdrawal plan for the Ukrainian forces sheltered there
There is no indication of the existence of a withdrawal plan for the Ukrainian forces sheltered there. They are believed to include members of the Azov regiment, the national guard, marines, border guards and other units.
Russia resumed shelling the industrial complex over the weekend after evacuation buses had left the area, an aide to the Mariupol mayor said. “Yesterday, as soon as the buses left Azovstal with the evacuees, new shelling immediately began,” Andryushchenko said.
A group of relatives of the forces entrenched there were scheduled to gather in kyiv’s Independence Square to head to Zaporizhia, where they hope to press for their loved ones to be evacuated from Mariupol.