Donetsk Separatists: Azovstal fighters prevent civilians from leaving

While the situation is still the same in the southeastern city of Mariupol, in particularly in the large Azovstal steel plant, besieged by Russian forces and which has attracted international attention in recent days, the pro-Moscow separatists of Donetsk have accused the fighters of having in it to prevent the exit of civilians.

Denis Pushilin, president of the separatist “Republic of Donetsk”, said today, Saturday, in statements to Al-Arabiya / Al-Hadath that those he described as “terrorists take refuge with civilians in the factory and take them as hostages”.

He also stressed at the same time that “the humanitarian corridors have been extended for a long time, especially for civilians”, whose safety he considers ensured by Russian and pro-Russian forces on the ground.

Move to the United Nations

However, he accused “the nationalists of preventing their exit”, stressing that the expulsion of some of them takes place through agreements with certain people and added that the next period will demonstrate whether it is possible to remove them all from the Azovstal.

He also explained that the United Nations will soon take steps to get them out, adding, “We’ll see what the method will look like and whether it is successful!”

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Asked if any special military operation would soon target Azovstal, he replied that he could not provide any details.

Fights and confrontations

For his part, Konstantin Ivashenko, mayor of Mariupol appointed by the Russian forces who took control of the coastal city a few days ago, said that in this phase the Azovstal region is witnessing hostilities and clashes.

He explained: “Some civilians managed to escape from the factory, but he felt that the civilians who remained on the spot were an obstacle to the elimination of the Arov Brigades.

Azovstal the last of the castles

It is noteworthy that the sprawling Azovstal complex, much of which was destroyed by Russian bombing, is the last enclave in which the Ukrainian organized resistance has holed up in Mariupol. It is estimated that it hosts about 2,000 Ukrainian soldiers and 1,000 civilians in bunker under the destroyed building.

A few days ago, Russia announced a ceasefire to allow civilians to leave any part they wanted. He also confirmed that he would also allow the exit of soldiers, fighters and those he describes as mercenaries, provided they lay down their weapons and declare their surrender.

However, the Ukrainian authorities denied that there had been a ceasefire, while the two sides blamed each other and blamed each other for allegations.

It is interesting to note that the city of Mariupol, overlooking the Sea of ​​Azov, has been a strategic target for Moscow since the beginning of the Russian military operation on the territory of its western neighbor on 24 February, since its control will be corridors. of open land for the movement of Russian forces between eastern Ukraine and Crimea, which Moscow annexed to its territory in 2014.

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