War in Ukraine: Vladimir Putin makes a surprise visit to Mariupol

In the midst of the war in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited the devastated city of Mariupol in the Donbass on the shores of the Sea of ​​Azov. A Ukrainian presidential adviser very quickly denounced the “cynicism” and “lack of remorse” of the master of the Kremlin.

Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Mariupol, a Ukrainian city devastated by the bombardments, the Kremlin press service said on Sunday, quoted by Russian news agencies. This is the Russian leader’s first trip to this Ukrainian port city besieged for months and taken by the Russian army in May 2022. Vladimir Putin already visited Crimea, the peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014, on Saturday, to the occasion of the 9th anniversary of the annexation.

The Russian president decided at the last moment to go to Mariupol, the Kremlin said on Sunday, insisting on the “spontaneous” nature of his trip. “It was all very spontaneous,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters, referring to the Russian leader’s first trip to Mariupol. “His trips to town were not planned either”, as was the visit to a local musical theater, nor his meeting with the inhabitants of the port city, he assured.

A Ukrainian presidential adviser has in the wake of Vladimir Putin’s “cynicism” and “lack of remorse”. “The criminals always return to the scene of their crimes… The murderer of thousands of Mariupol families came to admire the ruins of the city and its tombs. Cynicism and absence of remorse”, wrote on Twitter Mykhaïlo Podoliak. Ukrainian authorities in Mariupol called the leader an “international criminal”. “International criminal Putin visited the occupied city of Mariupol ‘at night’ probably so as not to see in daylight the city killed by his ‘liberation’,” the City Council wrote on his Telegram account, referring to the warrant. international arrest warrant targeting the Russian President.

The master of the Kremlin also made his night visit “like a thief”, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense said on Sunday. “As if he were a thief, Putin visited the Ukrainian city of Mariupol, taking shelter behind the night. Firstly, it is safer. And also, the night allows him to emphasize what he wants to show, and keeps the city his army utterly destroyed and its few surviving residents safe from prying eyes,” the ministry said on Twitter.

Two civilians killed and ten injured in strikes in Kramatorsk

Two civilians were killed and ten injured by Russian strikes with “cluster munitions” on Saturday afternoon in Kramatorsk, eastern Ukraine, announced Pavlo Kyrylenko, the governor of the Donetsk region. The strikes hit a park, a funeral goods store as well as a dozen residential buildings and two cars, he said on Telegram. “More than a hundred countries ban the use of cluster munitions, but Russia continues to use these weapons which release many smaller bombs and indiscriminately injure civilians”, denounced Pavlo Kyrylenko.

A few hours earlier, the mayor of Donesk, Alexander Gontcharenko, had reported two people killed and 8 injured, including 3 seriously, “consequences of the bombardment of Kramatorsk with cluster munitions”. “Russia continues to reign terror,” castigated the city councilor on his Facebook page. AFP journalists heard a dozen near-simultaneous explosions shortly before 4 p.m. local time and saw smoke rising in a park in the south of the city.

Shortly after, another dozen explosions of the same type were heard in a residential area about 2 km from the first strike. In the park, a woman died on the spot as a result of her injuries caused by shrapnel ammunition, AFP journalists noted.

Source: Europe1

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