Russia Bombs Art School Housing 400 Civilians in Besieged City of Mariupol

An art school being used as a bomb shelter in the once vibrant Ukrainian seaside town of Mariupol has been flattened in the latest wave of non-stop Russian strikes against civilian targets.

It is unclear whether any of the 400 people believed to be sheltering at the G12 School of the Arts survived, Mariupol city council said in a statement on its Telegram channel early Sunday.

The new attack comes as rescuers continue to reach more than 1,300 people believed to be trapped in a bomb shelter under the town’s Repertory theater, which was destroyed in an attack earlier this week . Continue shelling Entry into the city hampered rescue efforts and it is unclear if anyone who could have survived the initial collision was still alive under significant wreckage.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zenelensky said the attacks on Mariupol, which now includes an art school, theater and maternity hospital, would “go down in history of responsibility for war crimes”. In a statement released early Sunday, he said, “To do this for a peaceful city, what the occupiers did, is a horror that will be remembered for centuries. next.”

The latest attacks are part of an ongoing effort by Russian forces to secure the important port city of Mariupol, which has been without electricity, water or drainage for several weeks. Mariupol remains one of the most important cities in Russia’s sights as it will provide an important land link between Crimea and Russian-backed regions such as Luhansk and Donetsk. Currently, the two regions are only connected by the Sea of ​​Azov. Local authorities say 2,300 people have been killed in the city since the Russian invasion last month. Many were dumped in hastily dug mass graves.

On Sunday, the British Ministry of Defense, which is monitoring the situation closely, said there was no indication that things would get better any time soon. “It is likely that Russia will continue to use its heavy firepower to support attacks on urban areas in order to limit its own already substantial losses, at the expense of additional casualties. to civilians,” the British Ministry of Defense said on Sunday, adding that the continued bombardment had resulted in “widespread destruction and large numbers of civilian casualties.”

While those who have remained in the besieged city may be vulnerable to these increased attacks, the disturbing news that some have been allowed to leave is being held in Russia. Ukrainian official Pyotr Andryuschenko, told New York Times that up to 4,500 residents of Mariupol were brought to the Russian city of Tangarog – which borders Ukraine to the southeast – without their passports. Western media has not confirmed the forced relocation of residents, but some Ukrainian relatives of the alleged people have told of the terrifying circumstances under which the Russians had removed them from their homes. “Now the Russians are walking through the basements, and if there are people left, they are forced to take them to Taganrog,” a doctor named Eduard Zarubin, who managed to escape, told Ukrainian news agencies.

Mariupol Mayor Vadym Boichenko compared sending citizens to Russia to “the terrible events of the Second World War, when the Nazis raped the people”. He told Related press“Children, the elderly are dying. The city is destroyed and it is wiped from the face of the earth”.

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