Ukraine Deputy PM: To evacuate civilians from Mariupol today midday
Authorities in Ukraine plan to evacuate women and children from Mariupol today according to the Deputy Prime Minister Irina Vereshchuk.
According to Deputy Prime Minister Irina Vereshchuk, Ukrainian authorities are planning to evacuate today, Saturday, women, children, and the elderly from Mariupol.
“About Mariupol: today we are again trying to evacuate women, children, and the elderly. Now we are beginning to gather at the ringway near the Port City Mall. If everything goes according to plan, at about 12.00 we will start the evacuation," she said on Telegram.
It is still not known how Ukrainian authorities intend to proceed with the evacuation process since they lost all control and jurisdiction over the city that was taken by the Donetsk and Russian forces.
Russian Defense Ministry spokesperson Igor Konashenkov said on April 16 that Mariupol was under the control of Russians and the Ukrainian forces that were still in the Azovstal steel plant were completely surrounded. The Russian military offered them several times to surrender, with a ceasefire introduced on Tuesday, but nobody used the humanitarian corridors to leave the area.
The ministry added that the ceasefire would begin with Ukraine's forces' "raising of white flags" "along the entire perimeter or in certain areas of Azovstal."
"If such signs are found in any part of the Azovstal metallurgical plant, Russia's Armed Forces... will immediately stop any hostilities and provide a safe exit," it added.
According to the ministry, civilians will be escorted to either of the Ukraine-controlled territories or Russia, depending on what they want.
The life of the surrendered Ukrainian soldiers will be "guaranteed", it noted.
"This statement will be continuously communicated to the Ukrainian formations at Azovstal on all radio channels every 30 minutes," the ministry said.