The ICRC confirms the start of an agreed evacuation operation in Mariupol


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The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has confirmed this Sunday that it is participating in an evacuation operation from the Azovstal metallurgical plant, the last stronghold of Ukrainian forces and civilians in the city of Mariupol, besieged by Russian forces.

“The ICRC confirms that a coordinated safe passage operation is underway with the UN and the parties to the conflict. The convoy to evacuate civilians started operating on April 29, traveled some 230 kilometers and arrived in Mariupol on Saturday morning. “, explained the ICRC.

However, until now no information about this evacuation has come out because “no information has been shared until the situation allows it” because it could “seriously threaten” the safety of civilians and the convoy itself.

“The relevant local authorities are in communication with the civilians to discuss the practical details,” the ICRC explained.

Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelenski confirmed this Sunday that “the evacuation of civilians from Azovstal has begun.” “The first group, of about 100 people, is already heading towards the controlled area,” he said.

The Mariupol City Council had invited the civilians to gather at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday next to the Port City shopping center for their evacuation to Zaporizhia. “If you have relatives or acquaintances in Mariupol, try to get in touch with them by all possible means. Call them, send them text messages and tell them that they can go to Zaporizhia, where they will be safe,” explained the City Council through its channel on Telegram.

On Saturday the departure of the first 20 civilians evacuated from Mariupol was reported and this Sunday Russia has confirmed 46 evacuees, but it is estimated that there are some 100,000 people still in this city, devastated after weeks of fighting and bombing.

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