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Vereshchuk to the Russian Federation: Surrender of Mariupol is out of the question. You must open the corridor

Sunday, 20 March 2022, 23:14

Roman Kravets’ - Monday, 21 March 2022, 00:14

The Ministry of Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories has officially responded to Russia's ultimatums to surrender Mariupol.

Source: Iryna Vereshchuk, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine, in a comment to Ukrainska Pravda


Details: The Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation addressed an official letter to Ukraine, where it issued an ultimatum demanding Ukrainian defenders to lay down their arms and leave Mariupol. Under these conditions, the Russian Federation will allow the "evacuation of civilians."

According to Iryna Vereshchuk: "There are 8 pages with a historical retrospective and other nonsense. They have sent the same letter to the UN, the International Committee of the Red Cross and hoped that international organisations would react and start putting pressure on Ukraine. This did not happen. The ICRC and the UN understand that this is Russian manipulation, and that it [actions of the Russian military - ed.] is taking people hostage."

Details: Ukraine is demanding that Russian military personnel open a corridor for civilians immediately in order to evacuate them from Mariupol to Zaporizhzhia.

According to Vereshchuk: "Surrender and laying down weapons are out of the question. We have already informed the Russian side of this. I replied: ‘Just open the corridor instead of wasting time on 8 pages of letters’." 

"We have informed the UN and the ICRC. Now we are waiting for a reaction from the international community. This is deliberate manipulation and actual hostage-taking."

Details: Iryna Vereshchuk is also outraged that Russia has started kidnapping and deporting Ukrainian people from Mariupol to Russia.

According to Vereshchuk: "What is more, we have evidence that they are kidnapping children from orphanages and are not allowing us to transport them away. To make it clear: 350 children are going to be forcibly taken to Russia without letting us evacuate them."

"We are asking clearly: give us a corridor and we will explain which boarding school we are going to and why. They are immediately taking those children to Russia. This is terrorism."

Background: the Russian Defence Ministry issued an ultimatum to the Ukrainian authorities to surrender the city by 5 am on 21 March, and then the Russian occupying forces will allegedly open humanitarian corridors for the population and the disarmed Ukrainian military.