Russia and Ukraine Cease Fire to Evacuate Civilians from Mariupol and VolnovakhaUkraine | March 5, 2022, Saturday // 10:24| views
Russian forces declared a “silence regime” at 10 a.m. Moscow time and 9 a.m. Bulgarian time, the defense ministry said. TASS reports that Russia is opening humanitarian corridors for the exit of civilians from the cities of Mariupol and Volnovakha in the Donetsk region.
The opening of corridors was agreed in the second round of talks between Ukrainian and Russian representatives. Last night, both sides expressed readiness to continue the talks these days.
A partial ceasefire in Ukraine was announced after a number of cities in Ukraine came under heavy Russian fire. Among the targets were civilian sites. The heaviest pressure was on cities in the southern part of the country, with access to the Black Sea.
There was heavy fighting in northern, eastern and southern Ukraine. Kyiv has suffered new Russian missile strikes, with explosions heard in the capital. The northeastern cities of Kharkiv and Chernihiv were bombed.
The southeastern port city of Mariupol was surrounded and shelled, and Mayor Vadim Boychenko called for a humanitarian corridor. The city has been under siege since Thursday, and Boychenko has already warned of a humanitarian catastrophe there. Electricity and water supplies have been cut off as a result of “ruthless”, in Boychenko's words, Russian attacks. The food is also running out.
Mariupol is strategically important because control over it will create a land corridor between Crimea and the Russian-backed Luhansk and Donetsk regions.
Meanwhile, foreign media outlets, including the BBC and CNN, said they were suspending reports from Russia after President Putin signed a bill punishing the dissemination of “false” information about Russia's armed forces with up to 15 years in prison.
In Russia, the social network Facebook was also banned, access to Twitter and YouTube was blocked. Moscow said it had taken action after access to several Russian media profiles was restricted on Facebook.
A number of Western companies, such as Microsoft, Samsung and Chanel, have stopped selling in Russia.
Demonstrations in support of Ukraine and its President Volodymyr Zelensky took place in many cities around the world.
Thousands took to the streets of the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, and the Czech capital, Prague, last night, and President Zelenskъ addressed them via video link.
“All of you are Ukrainians today”, Zelensky told Europe.
There were also anti-war protests in Frankfurt, Vilnius, Lyon and Bratislava, Lisbon, London, Seoul, Jakarta and others.
The President of Ukraine will address the US Senate by video link later today.
UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said the number of Ukrainian refugees was approaching 1.5 million and was growing rapidly.
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