War in Ukraine: kyiv rejects Russian ultimatum to capitulate in Mariupol

kyiv rejects Russian ultimatum to capitulate in Mariupol

Members of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces point their weapons at a possible drone near a residential building hit by rocket debris, in kyiv on March 20, 2022

“There is no question of talking about surrender or laying down arms. We have already informed the Russian side about this,” Iryna Vereshchuk told the newspaper on Sunday. Ukrainian Pravda. “It’s deliberate manipulation and real hostage-taking,” she added of the request.
The Russian Defense Ministry had called on Ukraine to “lay down its arms” and demanded a “written response” to its ultimatum before 5 a.m. Monday, in the name of safeguarding the inhabitants and infrastructure of the city of Mariupol.

“The occupiers continue to behave like terrorists”

“Lay down your arms,” ​​said Mikhail Mizintsev, director of the Russian National Center for Defense Management. “A terrible humanitarian catastrophe has unfolded. All those who lay down their arms are guaranteed to be able to leave Mariupol in complete safety.”

According to Mikhail Mizintsev, Russia and Ukraine agreed on a route for Mariupol residents to reach kyiv-controlled territory on March 21. “From 10 a.m. Moscow time. Russia opens humanitarian corridors from Mariupol to the East, and in agreement with the Ukrainian side, to the West”, he detailed.

“The occupiers continue to behave like terrorists,” replied Iryna Vereshchuk on Telegram. “They say they agree (to establish a) humanitarian corridor and in the morning they bomb the place of evacuation. The government is doing everything possible. The most important thing for us is to save lives and the health of our citizens”

Local authorities say Russian soldiers forcibly transported around 1,000 residents to Russia, stripping them of their Ukrainian passports – a possible war crime.

Melissa Galbraith
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