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After several unsuccessful attempts, a new operation to evacuate the last civilians trapped in the Mariupol metallurgical plant is to take place on Friday.
4:07 a.m.: New UN convoy expected to evacuate civilians from Azovstal
A new UN convoy is expected to evacuate the last civilians entrenched in the Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol, the last pocket of Ukrainian resistance in this strategic port of Donbass, without however the assurance of a truce in the fighting.
Despite this uncertainty, the UN Assistant Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, announced Thursday that this new convoy was heading towards the martyr city, which has become one of the symbols of the Russian invasion that began on February 24.
“As we speak, a convoy is on its way to arrive in Azovstal by tomorrow morning with the hope of recovering the remaining civilians from this dark hell they have inhabited for so many weeks and months, and bring them back to safety,” said Martin Griffiths in Warsaw. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has confirmed that it is associated with it.
Information about the situation at the Mariupol steel plant is contradictory. The Ukrainian president assured, Thursday evening in his daily video message, that the Russian forces continued to pound the steelworks despite the Russian promise of a three-day truce. The Russian president, for his part, affirmed that “the Russian army was always ready to ensure the evacuation of civilians [d’Azovstal]”.
2:34 a.m.: Russia has destroyed hundreds of hospitals, claims Volodymyr Zelensky
Hundreds of institutions and hospitals have been destroyed since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, leaving doctors without drugs for the treatment of diseases such as cancers, or unable to perform surgery, said the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video to a charity medical group that many facilities in eastern and southern Ukraine, where the fighting is taking place, were notably short of antibiotics.
“If we only take into account the medical infrastructures, the Russian troops have, to date, destroyed or damaged nearly 400 of them: hospitals, maternity wards, outpatient treatment centers,” he explained.
2:04 am: Pentagon denies helping kyiv target Russian generals
The US Department of Defense has denied providing intelligence allowing Ukrainian forces to target senior Russian officers near the front, contrary to what The New York Times reported on Wednesday.
It’s true that the United States is passing intelligence to kyiv “to help the Ukrainians defend their country,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said. But, he added, “we do not provide information on the whereabouts of senior military commanders on the battlefield, nor do we participate in targeting decisions made by the Ukrainian military.”
11:57 p.m .: Several countries call for an end to the Russian war in Ukraine
The UN and several countries on Thursday called for an end to Russia’s war in Ukraine, with little mention of a revival of their seemingly stalled peace talks.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a violation of its territorial integrity and of the Charter of the United Nations,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said at a Security Council meeting. by Washington. “This must stop for the good of the Ukrainian people, Russian people and the whole world,” he added.
The UN chief recently traveled to Moscow and kyiv to push for the evacuation of civilians from Mariupol, several hundred of whom have been able to leave the city since this weekend.