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Ukraine: 100 civilians evacuated from besieged Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol

As many as 1,00,000 people are believed to still be in blockaded Mariupol

Ukraine: 100 civilians evacuated from besieged Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol
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Effort to evacuate civilians from the Azovstal steel plant in the besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol is underway.

As many as 1,00,000 people are believed to still be in blockaded Mariupol, including up to 1,000 civilians who were hunkered down with an estimated 2,000 Ukrainian fighters beneath the Soviet-era steel plant the only part of the city not occupied by the Russians.

UN humanitarian spokesman Saviano Abreu said the operation to bring civilians out of the sprawling Azovstal steel plant was being carried out with the International Committee of the Red Cross and in coordination with Ukrainian and Russian officials.

The evacuation operation drew praise from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who said more than 100 civilians primarily women and children were expected to arrive in the Ukrainian-controlled city of Zaporizhzhia on Monday.

Meanwhile, Russian forces resumed shelling of a steel plant in the war-torn city of Mariupol immediately after the partial evacuation of civilians.

Ukrainian National Guard brigade commander Denys Shlega said on Sunday in a televised interview that at least one more round of evacuations is needed to clear civilians from the Azovstal steel mill and dozens of small children are inside bunkers below the industrial facilities.

The shelling began as soon as rescue crews ceased evacuating civilians from the plant, Shlega said.

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