Home NEWS Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory: Report 28Mar 2022

Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory: Report 28Mar 2022

Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory: Report 28Mar 2022
Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory

Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory

Russia is providing an estimated 5,000 accommodation in a makeshift camp in Bezimen, east of Mariupol, seen in satellite images.

Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Irina Vereshchuk said 40,000 were transferred from Ukraine to Russian-occupied territory without any coordination with Kyiv.

One Mariupol refugee, now in Russia, said: “We were all forcibly taken away”.

Some Ukrainian officials described Russia’s actions as “deportation” to “filtration camps” – an echo of Russia’s war in Chechnya, when thousands of Chechens were brutally interrogated in makeshift camps and many disappeared.

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It is an internationally recognized abuse of human rights for a warring side to deport civilians to its territory.

The city council says that while 140,000 civilians managed to escape the besieged Mariupol, another 170,000 are still trapped. More than three weeks of continuous Russian shelling has turned the city into ruins, with its fearful citizens hiding in basements, desperately short of water, food and medicine.

The BBC is unable to independently confirm the figures of civilians evacuated from Mariupol or the number of people killed there.

Relatively few Mariupol citizens have fled through humanitarian corridors agreed to by both sides. Ukraine says Russian troops continued to shell out evacuation routes, which were considered safe.

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In parts of Mariupol occupied by the Russians, reports suggest that citizens – hungry, thirsty and often sick – have no choice but to move to Russian-controlled areas and Russia itself.

Matt Morris, spokesman for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), said that the ICRC could only evacuate civilians and provide aid if Russia and Ukraine provided security guarantees, and this had not yet happened, although the ICRC had been on both sides. was talking to.

“The parties have to be guarantors and come to an agreement to allow safe passage. They have to publicize the route and give people enough time to get out,” he told the BBC.

International humanitarian law, he said, “requires that people should be allowed to leave, but they should not be forced to leave”. He explained that the warring sides should allow aid and let the people stay.

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“It is a hopeless situation in Mariupol – we have called from all sides to facilitate safe access inside and out,” he said, adding that “we do not currently have a team capable of reaching.”

Mariupol refugee and Red Cross volunteer Irina talks to BBC’s Wire Davis via Zoom from a relative’s home in Russia.

He said that he and others who had taken refuge in a bunker had been asked by Russian soldiers to leave for their own safety. The building caught fire after the shelling.

They walked 4 km (2.5 mi) to a Russian outpost, and from there further east into an area occupied by pro-Russian rebels in the breakaway area of ​​the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic” (DPR).

“Once there, you had to decide whether you were going to stay in the DPR or go to Russia,” she said.

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“Some elderly people I know and whom I met at the delivery point didn’t know where they were going and for what. They thought they would be able to stay in Rostov [in Russia] for a few months … and then maybe come back to Mariupol.

“Instead, they were taken to Samara [north of Rostov in southern Russia]. They said they didn’t know what to do there, and provided accommodation there for only two weeks.”

The centuries-old ties between Russia and Ukraine have meant that many Ukrainians have relatives in Russia. But it is not clear how many Mariupol refugees have voluntarily gone to Russia, whose army destroyed their city.

Russia’s state newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta reported on March 21 that a long column of vehicles carrying refugees had taken more than two hours to reach Bezimen, a coastal village 90 km (56 mi) east of Mariupol. About 5,000 refugees are being housed there in tents, a school and a club. The Russian Emergency Ministry has sent aid and staff to the scene.

Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory
Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory

On the way, DPR rebels stopped civilians at checkpoints, who took their fingerprints and photographed them.

“The database of wanted criminals is checked with their data. One of the major problems is the lack of SIM cards and not everyone has a mobile phone,” the newspaper reported.

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Russia denies it is forcibly removing thousands of Ukrainians from its country.

Mariupol’s deputy mayor Serhi Orlov told the BBC that “some people are dying from dehydration and lack of food, some from lack of medicine, insulin” in his town. Many bodies have been left lying in the streets because collecting them is so risky.

“Russian soldiers just open [enter] this shelter and tell them: ‘Look, you have five minutes to evacuate in this direction. Just go, walk five or three or seven kilometers and the buses will take you to a temporarily controlled area. [by Russia] ] This house will be bombed in an hour if you don’t go

Russia relocated thousands of Mariupol citizens to its territory

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(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by News East India staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)



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