Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday called the Russian siege of Mariupol a “humanitarian catastrophe,” claiming Russian forces deported over 2,000 children from the city.
Volodymyr Zelensky told independent Russian journalists that the situation was, “The city is blocked by the Russian military. All entrances and exits are blocked. The port has been mined. There is a humanitarian catastrophe inside Mariupol. The Russian military is shelling humanitarian convoys. Drivers are being killed.”.
Moreover, Volodymyr Zelensky stated that Russian forces have engaged in the “forced removal of people” to Russia.
As far as we know, more than two thousand children were stolen, Volodymyr Zelensky said. “I can’t tell you what that looks like at all. I don’t know where they are. It’s frightening. They hold them like souls for an exchange fund.”
CNN cannot independently verify claims about how many children are being removed from Mariupol and other towns in Russia. According to a pro-Russian separatist on Sunday, around 1,700 people are “evacuated” to Russia each day from Mariupol and other cities.
Volodymyr Zelensky painted a grim picture of the situation in the city, which has been shattered by week-long fighting.
In the city, there are corpses lying on the streets and sidewalks, he explained. No one cleans the corpses of Russian soldiers or Ukrainian citizens – they are just lying around.”