Ukrainian servicemen will not be let out of Mariupol, says DNR spokesman Basurin
Ukrainian security forces will not be given a corridor to leave Mariupol
Residential building destroyed by shelling in Mariupol
DONETSK, 31 March – RIA Novosti. Ukrainian security forces will not be given a corridor to exit Mariupol, Eduard Basurin, a spokesman for the People’s Militia of the Donetsk People’s Republic, told RIA Novosti.
“Such an offer has already been made to them, they refused. Therefore, they are considered no longer fighters, they are criminals. Because they were killing civilians. Yes, we guarantee to keep them alive, but I don’t think we will let them go,” he told RIA Novosti.
At the time of the DNR’s proclamation in 2014, Mariupol, with a population of about 450,000, was the republic’s second-largest city after Donetsk. However, in June of that year, Ukrainian security forces regained control of Mariupol, and its eastern suburbs became one of the hottest conflict spots in Ukraine.
On March 7, 2022, Aleksandr Semenov, deputy commander of the Vostok battalion of the DNR, announced that the city was surrounded and the mopping-up of certain areas had begun. Russian military and DNR people’s militia fighters are currently engaged in liberating the city. Among other Ukrainian units in Mariupol are fighters from the Azov nationalist regiment, whose fighters are facing criminal charges in Russia.
On March 21, the Russian Defense Ministry offered the Ukrainian side to open humanitarian corridors from Mariupol for the exit of civilians as well as armed units and foreign mercenaries – without weapons or ammunition. Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk rejected the proposal.
Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine on February 24. President Vladimir Putin called its goal “to protect people who have been subjected to abuse, genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years.” For this purpose, he said, it was planned to conduct “demilitarization and denationalization of Ukraine,” to put on trial all war criminals responsible for “bloody crimes against civilians” in Donbas.
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