Turkey proposes to evacuate wounded soldiers from Azovstal by sea
The representative of the Turkish President Kalyn said that the Turkish ship is ready to deliver the wounded Ukrainian soldiers and other civilians to Istanbul through the Black Sea port of Berdyansk
Plant “Azovstal” in Mariupol
Turkey offered to evacuate the wounded Ukrainian soldiers who are at the Azovstal plant in Mariupol, along the Black Sea to Istanbul. This was announced by the press secretary of the President of Turkey, Ibrahim Kalin, in an interview with Reuters.
He said that he personally discussed this proposal with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv two weeks ago and that it remains relevant despite the fact that Moscow did not agree to it.
According to the plan, the wounded soldiers evacuated from Azovstal , will be transported by land to the port of Berdyansk, after which a Turkish ship will deliver them to Istanbul.
“If it can be implemented in this way, we will be happy to do it. We are ready. Our ship is ready to go and deliver wounded soldiers and other civilians to Turkey,— Kalyn emphasized.
The day before, Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine Irina Vereshchuk announced that Turkey had agreed to mediate in negotiations on the evacuation of forces controlled by Kyiv from Azovstal.
According to her, a meeting should be held in Russia with representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to agree on the first stage of the evacuation of the Ukrainian military from the plant, including the withdrawal from Azovstal; seriously wounded.
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In early May, Azovstal The operation of the UN and the Red Cross to evacuate civilians began. This became possible after the talks between the head of the UN, António Guterres, and the presidents of Russia and Ukraine, Vladimir Putin and Vladimir Zelensky.
The DPR reported that 150 civilians were evacuated from the plant in the first day. On May 7, Kyiv reported that all women, children and the elderly had left the enterprise. The Ministry of Defense spoke about the rescue of 51 people, including 11 children, and stressed that the operation to evacuate civilians was completed.
Vereshchuk told AFP on May 10 that Azovstal about a thousand Ukrainian soldiers remain, including “hundreds” of the wounded. According to her, Kyiv offered Moscow to exchange them for Russian prisoners, but so far there are no agreements.
On April 21, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu informed Putin about the capture of Mariupol during the military operation in Ukraine , adding that on the territory of the local enterprise “Azovstal” the “remnants of the nationalists” took refuge. Putin considered the storming of the plant inappropriate, advocating “preserving the life and health of our soldiers and officers,” but instructed to block the territory of the industrial zone so that “a fly would not fly by.”
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