Zelenskyj now considers Mariupolin’s release impossible
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zhelensky has said that the port city of Mariupol, occupied by Russian troops, is unlikely to be liberated. “Ukraine does not have enough heavy weapons to liberate Mariupol by military means”, Zelenskyj told a news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who went to Kiev for a unity visit on Sunday. Evacuation of civilians from besieged Azovstel steelworks is possible, at least through diplomatic means, Zhelensky said. However, for the remaining Ukrainian players, the exit will be difficult.
“Russian soldiers, the Russian military, the military leadership and the political leadership of the Russian Federation do not want to expel our soldiers.”The Ukrainian leader said. Kiev has called on Turkey, Israel, France, Switzerland, the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross to mediate. Most recently, Onufri, head of the largest Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the Moscow Patriarchate, called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to allow Ukrainian troops to leave.
The southeastern Ukrainian port of Mariupol has been under Russian control for several weeks. Over the weekend, the last trapped civilian was evicted from the city’s iron plant. Hundreds of Ukrainian guards are said to be staying in the plant’s bunkers. On Sunday they reiterated that they did not want to surrender. (dpa)
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