72nd day of war in Ukraine: President Zelenskyy said Mariupol was completely destroyed

President Zelenskyy said all plants in Mariupol had been “completely destroyed,” leaving only the Azovstal Iron and Steel Works in the south-east.

“The city is destroyed, there are no more buildings. Everything is completely destroyed,” said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy about the situation in Ukraine. Mariupol speaking to consultancy Chatham House in London on May 6.

“What remains are small lawns and small structures, the Azovstal Iron and Steel Works or what’s left of it,” Zelenskyy said.

Iron and Steel Factory Azovstal is the last defensive stronghold of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the city of Mariupol. About 200 civilians are believed to be taking shelter in the underground bunker beneath the facility.

The Ukrainian military accused Russian forces of opening fire to evacuate them despite a ceasefire. One Ukrainian soldier was killed and six injured in the shooting. Russia did not comment on this information.

The site of the Azovstal Iron and Steel Factory in the city of Mariupol in southern Ukraine on May 3.  Photo: RIA Novosti.

The site of the Azovstal Iron and Steel Factory in the city of Mariupol in southern Ukraine on May 3. Picture: RIA Novosti.

Officer Severodonetsk Russian forces and armed units of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) have almost completely surrounded the city. The Ukrainian military has repelled some attacks, but Russian and separatist forces are exerting pressure.

Oleksandr Striuk, head of the military junta in Severodonetsk, said Russian and Separatist forces were trying to enter the city through nearby villages. Striuk said that there are still about 15,000 people in Severodonetsk, the evacuation rate in that city has slowed and about 10 people go here every day.

Russian Senator Andrey Turchak announced that “Russia will have a permanent presence”. Kherson, southern Ukraine and “there is no going back to the old days”. Mr Turchak confirmed that Kherson residents will decide on the province’s status and said Russia will help solve local problems.

The military situation in Ukraine after 11 weeks of fighting.  Graphic: Washington Post.

The military situation in Ukraine after 11 weeks of fighting. Graphic: Washington Post.

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said its soldiers used US-made FGM-148 Javelin anti-tank missiles to destroy a Russian T-90M tank in Kharkov. However, it is not clear how many missiles hit the T-90M and there are no other photos from the scene.

T-90M Proryv-3 is the most modern tank in service with the Russian army today, the Ukrainian side does not have this type of vehicle. This may be the first Russian T-90M destroyed in actual combat in Ukraine. The Russian Defense Ministry has not commented on the information.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby denied that the US provided intelligence to help Ukrainian forces “target the battleship Moscow” and confirmed that the country was unaware of the attack that led to the sinking of the Russian flagship on April 13th.

Federal Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht confirmed that Germany will send Ukraine seven self-propelled howitzers Panzerhaubitze 2000 (PzH 2000). These PzH 2000 howitzers will be taken out of the Bundeswehr warehouse for maintenance before being shipped to Ukraine.

Nguyen Tien (Corresponding RIA Novosti, TASS, Reuters, AFP)