Mariupol does not give in to the Russian ultimatum and will continue fighting

Ukraine has rejected Russia’s ultimatum to surrender Mariupol and called for the opening of evacuation corridors. Deputy Minister Iryna Vershchuk says Ukraine will continue to try to bring supplies to the city and help its citizens leave for other Ukrainian cities. There is still no news on the fate of hundreds of people who may be under the ruins of shelters destroyed by Russian bombs.

Meanwhile, 600 kilometers to the west, a Russian ship shelled for the first time the important port and the main commercial and tourist city of Odessa. According to regional administration spokesman Sergiy Bratchuk, several buildings were damaged with no reports of casualties. Russian ships had been sighted along the Odessa coast for days, but so far no attempt has been made to shell the city or land Russian troops.

Meanwhile, Russia continues to shell various military and civilian targets across the country. In the Rivne region in the west, a military base was hit by two missiles this morning. In Kiev, a shopping center in the residential area of the Podil district was hit with at least 8 people killed overnight. There are large craters at the site and witnesses say a mobile rocket launcher was positioned for several days near the shopping center.

The fires caused by the shelling have led to a drastic decrease in air quality with people in some parts of the city complaining that they “can’t breathe.” The IQAir monitoring service shows that Kiev currently ranks ninth among the world’s cities with the most air pollution.

An ammonia leak was also reported at a Sumykhimprom chemical plant overnight in the northeastern Ukrainian city of Sumy. A warehouse containing 50 tons of ammonia was damaged by Russian shelling. The mayor of the city claims that the leak has already been blocked and there is no danger to citizens.

However, fears of a possible ecological catastrophe remain high as Ukraine’s chemical, metallurgical and nuclear plants are concentrated in the area that has seen heavy fighting and shelling in recent weeks. In Mariupol, one of Europe’s largest metallurgical plants has been irreparably damaged by Russian bombs.


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