Ukraine Says Mariupol Has Not Fallen
By VOA News April 17, 2022
Ukraine's prime minister said Sunday that the strategic port city of Mariupol remains under Ukrainian control.
"The city still has not fallen," Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal told ABC's "This Week," hours after the expiration of a Russian deadline for holdout Ukrainian fighters in the besieged port city to surrender their weapons.
"There's still our military forces, our soldiers. So, they will fight to the end," he said.
Asked about reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin believes Moscow is winning the war, Shmyhal noted that while several cities are under siege, only Kherson in the south has fallen under Russian control.
"More than 900 cities, towns and villages...are freed from Russian occupation," Shmyhal said, adding Ukraine has no intention of surrendering in the eastern Donbas region.
On NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday, Austria Chancellor Karl Nehammer said Putin is "in his own war logic" and believes Russia is winning the war in Ukraine.
Nehammer said he had visited the Ukraine town of Bucha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, where evidence of killings and torture were found after Russian forces withdrew from the area. He later met with Putin in Moscow and said that he confronted the Russian leader with what he had seen in Bucha, adding, "It was not a friendly conversation."
On Saturday, Zelenskyy said that if surrounded Ukrainian troops in Mariupol were killed, peace talks with Moscow would be scrapped. Putin had already said the talks were at a "dead end."
Shmyhal said Sunday that Ukraine wants a diplomatic solution "if possible."
"We won't leave our country, our families, our land," he added.
Zelenskyy tweeted Sunday that he had discussed ensuring Ukraine's financial stability and preparations for post-war reconstruction with International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva.
On Twitter, Georgieva responded, saying that support was "essential to lay the foundations for rebuilding a modern competitive #Ukraine."
Thank you @ZelenskyyUA for the very good call today. Continued economic support by Ukraine's partners is essential to lay the foundations for rebuilding a modern competitive #Ukraine. https://t.co/QqCchEollS
â€” Kristalina Georgieva (@KGeorgieva) April 17, 2022
Zelenskyy, in an interview with CNN taped Friday and aired Sunday, said Ukraine is prepared to fight for the Donbas region. The battle will be critical, he said. If Russia were to capture Donbas, it could once again try to seize Kyiv.
"...It is very important for us to not allow them, to stand our ground, because this battle ... can influence the course of the whole war," Zelenskyy said.
Asked whether he was concerned that Russia could resort to using nuclear force, Zelenskyy said he and the rest of the world should be worried.
"They can. For them, the life of the people is nothing," he said.
Russia initially described its aims as disarming Ukraine and defeating nationalists there. Kyiv and its Western allies say those are bogus justifications for an unprovoked war of aggression that has driven a quarter of Ukraine's 44 million people from their homes.
Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Reuters and Agence France-Presse.
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