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Ukraine official: Russian forces take at least 400 hostages from Mariupol Hospital

Pavlo Kyrylenko, a regional leader in besieged Mariupol, reported that at least 400 people had been taken hostage at a local hospital by Russian forces.

The company said it was forced to drive about 400 people from neighboring houses to Mariupol's Regional Intensive Care Hospital, Kyrylenko said on the messaging app Telegram.

"It is impossible to leave the hospital," Kyrylenko quoted a hospital employee as saying.

As the hospital worker told Kyrylenko in the basement, "the shooting is intense, and there has been no access to cars for two days, and high-rise buildings are blazing around us."

"Practically destroyed" by Russian troops several days earlier, Kyrylenko said, patients and workers remained in the basement where they were being treated.

In his post, Kyrylenko urged international human rights organizations to take action against these egregious crimes against humanity involving "vicious violations of war norms and customs."

General Staff of the Ukrainian army stated that Russian forces are attempting to block off the city from the western and eastern edges. In a Facebook post, it described "significant losses" in the region.

Mariupol has seen heavy Russian shelling in recent days, with Ukrainian authorities saying 2,500 people in the city have been killed. Ukrainian officials said that three people were killed in an attack on a Mariupol hospital last week.

16 March 2022


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