Russia steps up Ukraine assaults ahead of Victory Day parades
Posted 2 months ago in News and Politics.
Ukraine hoped to evacuate more civilians from a besieged Mariupol steel plant on Saturday (May 7) as Russian forces unleased new bombardments across the country ahead of Victory Day festivities in Moscow.
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The Azovstal steel mill is the last pocket of Ukrainian resistance in the devastated port city and its fate has taken on a symbolic value in the broader battle unleashed by Russia's invasion.
Ukraine's defence minister said Russian forces had resumed their assault on the site, despite earlier talk of a truce to allow trapped civilians to flee the complex.
Vice Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said rescuers would try to evacuate more civilians on Saturday.
On Monday, Moscow and President Vladimir Putin will celebrate the World War II Soviet victory over Nazi Germany with a traditional Victory Day parade.
Russia's campaign in Ukraine has run into tough resistance - and provoked Kyiv's western allies into slapping massive economic sanctions on the Russian economy and Putin's inner circle.
But with Victory Day fast approaching, Ukrainian officials fear more intense missile and artillery bombardments and renewed assaults as Moscow scrambles for symbolic wins.