Mariupol mayor says city ’90 percent’ destroyed following siege of over a month
130,000 people remain trapped in city, continuously pounded by Russian attacks that largely come ‘from the sea,’ Boichenko says; evacuation attempts continue to face setbacks
KYIV, Ukraine — The Ukrainian port city of Mariupol in the southeast of the country has been “90 percent” destroyed after being besieged by Russian forces, its mayor Vadym Boichenko said Monday.
“The sad news is that 90 percent of the infrastructure in the city is destroyed and 40 percent is unrecoverable,” Boichenko told a press conference.
Around 130,000 people remained trapped in the city, which continues to be pounded by Russian bombardments, he said.
Approximately half a million people lived in the city on the coast of the Sea of Azov before the outbreak of the war.
“The Russian army is brutally destroying Mariupol,” Boichenko said.
“The bombings are incessant,” the mayor said, with the notable use of “multiple rocket launchers.”
According to Boichenko, the majority of the attacks on the city were coming “from the sea,” where “Russian ships” were stationed.
“We are planning to evacuate the remaining residents, but we cannot do it today,” he said.
Russia and Ukraine have blamed each other for the difficulties encountered during recent evacuation attempts.
Mariupol has been under siege by Russian forces for over a month, leaving the population to fend for themselves in conditions that have been denounced by the international community.