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Mariupol Humanitarian Corridor in Operation as ‘Hero’ Azov Commander Begs To Be Saved

May 1, 2022 (EIRNS)—The United Nations reports that a number of civilians have been brought out from the Azovstal plant in Mariupol, reportedly women and children. This would be consistent with the Ukrainian position that all male Ukrainians have a duty to serve in the military, and with the “human shield” policy of the Azov Battalion (or Regiment), male civilians are also prevented from leaving. The Azov troops in Mariupol have also been denied the ability to surrender in their impossible situation, threatened with the death penalty if they make the attempt.

The Commander of the Azov Brigade and the Ukrainian 36th Marine Brigade forces within Azovstal, Serhiy Volna, gave a video interview to CNN on April 29, in which he pleaded with the government to let them leave rather than be killed. Rather than presenting the image of the brave Ukrainian fighters fighting to the death against the evil Russian invaders, Volna was pleading for the Kyiv government to save them. In paraphrase, he said the following:

This is beyond a humanitarian catastrophe. We were told there would be an attempt to evacuate us today. There are hundreds of civilians here, including about 60 children. There is little food or water. Yesterday there was a direct hit on the field hospital within the compound. We have 500 wounded, almost no medications, and we cannot treat them. President Zelenskyy briefs us on the situation, the many movements, and keeps our spirits high. I can’t say how long we can hold out. We hope we’ll be evacuated. We urge the world’s political and religious leaders to give us a humanitarian corridor to get out.

NBC News quotes Volna: “We are probably facing our last days, if not hours. We appeal and plead to all world leaders to help us. We ask them to use the procedure of extraction and take us to the territory of a third-party state.”

Extraction is certainly impossible, as the Donbas and Russian troops have the compound totally isolated. They have offered a humanitarian corridor to the civilians (some have used it) and to soldiers who surrender, but without permission from Kyiv, they would be considered traitors by the Ukrainian government. Russia has agreed to free captives other than those who have been identified as part of the neo-Nazi factions who have committed atrocities, and the foreigners who will be held as criminals (there are reported to be as many as 500 foreign mercenaries within the compound).

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