Ukraine crisis: Fighting rages around Mariupol steel plant and port

Russia used long-range bombers to attack Mariupol, defence ministry official says

By Reuters

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Published: Fri 15 Apr 2022, 6:45 PM

Ukraine said on Friday it was trying to break Russia’s siege of Mariupol and that fighting raged around the southern city’s Illich Steel and Iron Works and port.

“The situation in Mariupol is difficult and hard. Fighting is happening right now. The Russian army is constantly calling on additional units to storm the city,” defence ministry spokesman Oleksandr Motuzyanyk said.

“But as of now the Russians haven’t managed to completely capture it,” he told a televised briefing.

Motuzyanyk said Russia had used long-range bombers to attack Mariupol for the first time since its Feb. 24 invasion, and that elsewhere Russian forces were concentrating efforts on seizing the cities of Rubizhne and Popasna in Ukraine’s east.

He called the loss of Russia’s lead warship in the Black Sea, the Moskva, significant. But he said he was not authorised to give out information on a factory near the capital Kyiv that Russia’s defence ministry said it hit with missiles overnight.

Russia said on Friday that it had taken full control of Mariupol’s Illich Steel and Iron Works and pledged more strikes on targets in Kyiv.

Moscow calls its actions in Ukraine a “special operation” to destroy Ukraine’s military capabilities and root out nationalists, but Ukraine and the West say Russia launched an unprovoked war of aggression.

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