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Ukraine: Russia rains bombs on besieged Mariupol steel plant

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 Ukraine Russia rains bombs on besieged Mariupol steel plant
The Steel Plant

Ukraine officials said Sunday Russia has launched an airstrike on the Azovstal steel factory in the besieged Southern port city of Mariupol.

Last week Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a tight blockade of the facility that Russian forces have struggled to take over from perhaps thousands of Ukraine fighters and civilians who have remained in control of the plant.

Meanwhile, The International Committee of the Red Cross said in a statement Sunday that it is “deeply alarmed by the situation in Mariupol, where the population is in dire need of assistance.” The ICRC said, “Immediate and unimpeded humanitarian access is urgently required to allow for the voluntary safe passage of thousands of civilians and hundreds of wounded out of the city, including from the Azovstal plant area.”

READ ALSO:Ukraine lists conditions for Nigerians willing to fight Russian troops

The bombing of the factory comes as Ukraine is observing Orthodox Easter Sunday and as Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is scheduled to meet with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital.

Zelenskyy said Ukraine “is expecting specific things and specific weapons,” as an outcome of the first official visit by U.S. government officials since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.

There has been no confirmation of the trip from U.S. officials.

On Thursday, Zelenskyy meets with U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. Before the U.N. chief’s meeting with Zelenskyy, the secretary general is scheduled to meet with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara Monday and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow Tuesday.

British officials said Saturday that Russian troops haven’t gained significant new ground despite announcing a renewed offensive along the eastern front, while Ukraine declared a nationwide curfew ahead of Orthodox Easter on Sunday.

 

(VOA)

 

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