Battles for Mariupol (2022)

Article

July 6, 2022

The battles for Mariupol are hostilities between the armed forces of Russia and the self-proclaimed DPR on the one hand and Ukraine on the other. They began on February 25, 2022, the day after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. On March 2, the Ukrainian troops stationed in Mariupol were surrounded and the blockade of the city began. On April 13, the 36th Marine Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, blocked at the Ilyich Iron and Steel Works, made an attempt to break through, as a result of which some of the fighters entered the territory of the Azovstal industrial complex (joining there with the military from the Azov regiment), and some were captured . According to the Russian side, more than 1,000 Marines were captured, but the Ukrainian side and independent sources were unable to confirm this assertion. At the end of April, Russia and the DPR, in connection with the capture of most of Mariupol, transferred part of the troops stationed there to other directions. Azovstal was regularly subjected to shelling and air strikes. According to The Guardian, in early May, there were about 2,000 Ukrainian soldiers on the territory of Azovstal. The Russian side, in an ultimatum form, demanded that they surrender, promising to save their lives, but the fighters continued to defend. The leaders of the Azov regiment later stated that the option of surrender was not considered, since death awaits them in Russian captivity. On May 16, 2022, all Ukrainian soldiers who were on Azovstal surrendered, which marked the end of the siege of Mariupol. According to the Russian side, a total of 2,439 people have surrendered from the territory of the plant since May 16. The Meduza edition calculated that “according to information about the surrender by day, this figure is about one and a half thousand people.” President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said that about 2,500 Ukrainian soldiers had surrendered from Azovstal. At Azovstal there were also civilians from Mariupol, whose evacuation was carried out only after the personal intervention of UN Secretary General António Guterres. In early May, three evacuations were carried out, about 600 people were taken out of Mariupol. According to UN estimates, as a result of the fighting in the city, up to 90% of residential buildings and up to 60% of private houses were damaged or destroyed. During the fighting, 90% of Mariupol hospitals were destroyed,