Russia has called for the surrender of Ukrainian forces fighting in Mariupol, but has received no response from besieged troops in the first three hours of the deadline.
On Sunday, Russia set a time limit for handing over arms to Ukrainian troops and “foreign mercenaries” from 8am to 1pm Moscow time, saying those who would lay down their arms would be accorded the status of prisoners of war and would be treated in accordance with the Geneva Conventions.
On Sunday morning, as on other days, the sirens of the air strikes were heard across Ukraine, the news agency Reuters reported.
A report released by the Ukrainian military on Friday states that Russian airstrikes on Mariupol were continuing and that operations were under way near the seaport.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on Saturday it had taken control of all other areas of the city, with only a handful of Ukrainian troops now stranded in the area surrounding a huge steel plant.
Reuters could not confirm whether the Moscow statement was true; However, taking control of Mariupol would be a major strategic achievement for the Russian military, which launched an operation on February 24.
Russia claims that there are Ukrainian troops inside the factory area, which is the Azovstal factory. It can also be called a fort, its industrial area is more than 11 square kilometers. There are also countless buildings, metal smelters and railway lines.
Among those who fought to defend the city were members of the Ukrainian Marines, the Motorized Brigade, the National Guard Brigade, as well as members of the Azov Regiment.
Azov, a militia force created by far-right nationalists, joined Ukraine’s National Guard.
It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post.
“The situation in Mariupol is very complicated. Our troops are trapped, the wounded are trapped. There has been a humanitarian catastrophe, but they are defending themselves, “President Volodymyr Zelensky told Ukrainian media Pravda.