Steel mills have become a symbol of resistance to the Russian invasion

Ukraine, Mariupol

 The siege of Russian troops around Mariupol continues where other areas have been closed in light of another possible attempt to attack the Azovstal steel mill. The news was reported by Petro Andrushchenko, adviser to the mayor of Mariupol . "For now, the occupiers have closed the Left Bank district square again from Veselka Park, north of the steel mill. This could be due to a new attack attempt on Azovstal or street fighting," Andrushchenko said.

 Today, according to a report from the Reuters office, citing the office of the Ukrainian president, Zelensky, an operation to evacuate civilians from the steel plant was scheduled. "An operation is planned today to remove civilians from the factory," the office said without providing other details. Meanwhile, 125 residents including 22 children were reportedly evacuated from Mariupol to the separatist republic of Donetsk, according to pro-Russian authorities themselves, detailing that the refugees were being sent to Bezymenne in the Novoazovsk district. More than 600 people will arrive in the Republic yesterday and the total number, as of last March 5, will exceed 25 thousand units.

 The steel mill has become a symbol of resistance to invasion in the eyes of the world, but now the beleaguered lurking in basements are running out of food and ammunition supplies, according to a week ago on CNN by Yuriy Ryzhenkov, CEO of the company that owns the factory. According to the besieged port cities, there are at least 2,000 civilians trapped in the steel mill. These are children, women and the elderly without the availability of medicines. Mariupol Mayor Vadym Boichenko said that 600 people were injured in the recent bombing that hit the field hospital set up inside the factory: "This is a war crime - he told Ukrainian television - previously, only 170 were injured". 

He also accused Russia of having set up "filter points" where those wishing to leave the city "if they are connected in some way with the city administration, with the public service, receive the bad news that they have to go to prison. People are detained and tortured". Independent verification of this accusation is impossible.
Putin has indicated that every exit to the factory should be closed "so that no flies pass through" and at the same time stated that "the completion of the combat operation to liberate Mariupol has been successful. There is no need to descend into those catacombs . and crawl under the industrial complex. that." Putin may be waiting for a beleaguered steel mill to run out of food or ammunition reserves and decide to surrender, to present an image that will reinforce his rhetoric about "denazification". 

In recent days, the steel factory, where the defenders of Mariupol are located, has been overwhelmed by enemy fire, mainly from air strikes. Also from Mariupol came the news of the death of Alina Peregudova , 14, winner of several gold medals at the national weightlifting championship. The news was reported by the city council's Telegram channel, explaining that the young athlete “is a candidate for the Ukrainian national team. He aspires to continue winning at the highest level. But 'Russian peace' has arrived, which has 'liberated' him from this future. Promising female sportsman from the Donetsk region died from enemy bullets. Together with Alina, Russian soldiers killed her mother ”. The city council itself accused the pro-Russian occupiers of "stealing and transferring more than 2,000 unique artifacts from the Mariupol museum to Donetsk".

Meanwhile, the Russian Foreign Minister, Serghei Lavrov, exploded today with an interview on the Al-Arabiya television channel in which he discussed topics of great concern to international public opinion. Negotiations between the Russian Federation and Ukraine on security guarantees could progress significantly, if Kiev is an "honest" negotiator, Lavrov said. security guarantees will be provided by a number of countries. We are not against it." Moscow criticizes Kiev for having asked, contrary to what was originally set out, that security guarantees - a condition for declaring its neutral status - also extend to Crimea and eastern Ukraine. Crimea was annexed by Russia in 2014 and the self-proclaimed republic Donetsk and Lugansk, in the Donbass, are recognized as independent by the Kremlin. 

Russia has never used mercenaries. I can assure you that the Syrian people have their own concerns," the minister told those who asked him if Russia was using foreign mercenaries, including from Syria, in Ukraine. Russia does not consider itself at war with NATO, a development of such events would increase the risk of nuclear war, which cannot be tolerated, Lavrov said. "We do not consider ourselves to be at war with NATO, because this would be a move that would increase the risk of what was just discussed", namely the start of nuclear war. "Unfortunately, there is a feeling that NATO believes it is at war with Russia", added the head of diplomacy in Moscow, citing "statements by the leaders of the Atlantic Alliance, the leaders of the United States and Europe, in particular in the United Kingdom, Poland, France and Germany, which say that Russia must be defeated". 

Russia is not threatening anyone with nuclear war, Western countries are starting to talk about it. “I was asked if nuclear war was possible, whether the risk of starting a nuclear war had increased and if Russia assumed that this could happen. I replied that from the very beginning of our cooperation with (former US President Donald) Trump, we offered them to reaffirm the 1997 Reagan-Gorbachev thesis that there are no winners in nuclear war and therefore should not be let go."

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