“Mariupol has been liberated,” defence minister Sergei Shoigu advised President Vladimir Putin throughout a televised assembly.
Russian troops have besieged the southeastern metropolis because the early days of the battle and largely pulverized it — and high officers have repeatedly indicated it was about to fall, however Ukrainian forces stubbornly held on.
Situated on the Sea of Azov, town has been a key prize for Russia in its bid to affix up the annexed Crimea peninsula to the west with territory held by pro-Russian rebels within the east.
This is a timeline of the Russian siege of Mariupol
Every week after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Moscow’s artillery begins pounding Mariupol, a predominantly Russian-speaking metropolis of 441,000 inhabitants some 55 kilometres (35 miles) from the Russian border and 85 kilometres from the pro-Russia separatist stronghold of Donetsk.
The mayor accuses Russian forces and pro-Russian fighters of looking for to “impose a blockade” by slicing off meals provides and very important infrastructure, together with water, electrical energy and heating.
Russia targets a constructing housing a maternity ward and paediatric hospital in Mariupol, killing three, together with a younger lady.
Ukraine and the European Union condemn a “warfare crime.” Russia claims the constructing is sheltering Ukrainian nationalists.
Evacuation of hundreds of civilians from town via a humanitarian hall begins.
Earlier evacuation makes an attempt had collapsed with each side accusing the opposite of failing to halt hearth.
Russian airstrikes raze a theatre sheltering round 1,000 folks, principally ladies and youngsters. It takes days to achieve survivors trapped in an underground shelter.
Ukrainian authorities estimate some 300 folks have been killed.
Moscow denies the assault, blaming Ukraine’s far-right Azov battalion, which relies within the metropolis.
Kyiv rejects a primary Russian ultimatum to Ukrainian forces within the metropolis to give up.
Civilians who handle to flee in their very own automobiles describe a “freezing hellscape riddled with lifeless our bodies and destroyed buildings,” Human Rights Watch says.
Moscow broadcasts a ceasefire to permit the evacuation of civilians from Mariupol to the Ukrainian-controlled metropolis of Zaporizhzhia.
The Ukrainian authorities sends 45 buses to carry folks to security.
Mariupol mayor Vadym Boychenko says town has been “90 %” destroyed.
A handout video seize taken from a footage launched by Mariupol Metropolis Council on April 19, 2022 reveals clouds of smoke billowing above Azovstal metal plant and the destroyed gates of Azov Shipyard. (AFP)
Zelenskyy says Russia is obstructing humanitarian entry to Mariupol as a result of it needs to cover proof of “hundreds” of individuals killed there.
The brand new “mayor” of Mariupol, Konstantin Ivashchenko, put in by pro-Russian forces, says that round 5,000 civilians have died.
Marines in Mariupol say they’re making ready for a “final battle”.
Zelenskyy places the loss of life toll in Mariupol at “tens of hundreds”.
The US says it has “credible info” that Russia might use “chemical brokers” in its offensive.
Russia’s defence ministry says that 1,026 troopers from the thirty sixth Marine Brigade have “surrendered” in Mariupol and broadcasts a video showing to point out troops giving themselves up.
Ukraine’s military insists the battle continues.
Over the next week, Russia points a string of ultimatums to troops holed up on the Azovstal steelworks to offer themselves up however they refuse.
A marine commander on the steelworks, the place round 1,000 civilians are additionally sheltering based on the Ukrainian authorities, says his troops are “possibly going through our final days, if not hours.”
4 busloads of ladies, youngsters and the aged are evacuated from town.
Putin declares the “liberation” of Mariupol to be a “success.” He orders the Russian navy to chorus from storming the Azovstal plant, telling them to besiege it as an alternative, “in order that not even a fly can escape”.
(With inputs from AFP, AP)