Donetsk Separatists Say Almost 1,000 Have Surrendered at Azovstal Plant

The self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic stated on May 18 {that a} complete of 962 Ukrainian fighters had surrendered on the Azovstal metal plant for the reason that starting of the week. Newly launched video from the Russian Ministry of Defense’s Zvezda channel confirmed fighters, some on stretchers and crutches, leaving the plant. Some of the individuals are carrying Azovstal metal plant uniforms and others are in military-style uniforms. The video ends with fighters being loaded onto buses, and one into an ambulance. Starting on May 16, Ukrainian evacuees have been moved to Russian-occupied Novoazovsk and Olenivka in Donetsk Oblast, in keeping with Ukraine’s Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Malyar. The Russian Ministry of Defense stated the wounded could be handled in hospital in Novoazovsk. Malyar stated an trade for the evacuees would happen, however the Russian Duma was reported to be contemplating a ban on swapping prisoners from the Azov Battalion. The navy personnel could be interrogated by investigators from Russia’s Investigative Committee, state media reported on May 17. Denis Pushilin, head of the DPR, stated on May 18 that their destiny “should be decided by the court,” one other report stated. Russia has accused the Azov Battalion and different Ukrainian fighters who held Azovstal of being criminals, and has repeatedly likened them to Nazis. The Azov Battalion originated as a far-right militia earlier than being absorbed into the Ukrainian navy. The Azovstal plant had turn into the final stronghold of Ukrainian troops in Mariupol after many of the metropolis fell below management of the Russian navy and the Donetsk People’s Republic. Hundreds of civilians sheltering in Azovstal have been evacuated to areas below each Russian and Ukrainian management as a part of an earlier deal. Credit: Zvezda News by way of Storyful

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