Russian Troops REPELLED – Ukraine Make A Comeback!
(UnitedVoice.com) – On February 24, Russia began its invasion of Ukraine. From the onset of the war, Russia has attempted to take Mariupol. Yet, a small force of Ukrainian fighters has been a persistent thorn in Russia’s side in completing those plans. Without Mariupol, it’s increasingly difficult for Russia to access Crimea, which it annexed from Ukraine in 2014, and the Donbas eastern region of Ukraine.
On Friday, May 6, Ukrainian fighters were still holding on to the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol despite incoming Russian artillery and other tactics to flush them out. Over the last three months, the Russian military killed thousands of civilians by depriving the city of food, water, and electricity. The steel plant is the final holdout and symbol of Ukrainian resistance, and despite the odds from an overwhelming military force, they’re holding on nearly three weeks after fleeing into the Cold War-era facility. In the meantime, as Russia focuses on Mariupol, Ukrainian fighters say they’re successfully taking some areas back from Russia.
Ukrainian Fighters Holding On
On Thursday, The Wall Street Journal reported the Azovstal steel plant is a complex facility sprawling over an expanse of four square miles and encompassing underground passages leading to warehouses, furnaces, tunnels, and rail tracks. It includes 40 underground bunkers capable of withstanding a nuclear blast. Five of the bunkers have basic supplies and triple bunks. Perhaps this explains why the Russians are having such difficulty extracting the Ukrainian holdouts from the facility.
So, how are they surviving? The Wall Street Journal noted civilians allowed to leave under a humanitarian agreement said they melted snow and collected rainwater to drink. Ukrainian soldiers provided them with other supplies daily.
Also, on Thursday, United Press International (UPI) reported the Russian military has continually attacked the massive steel plant over the last several days. An advisor to Mariupol’s mayor told UPI that Russia pounded the facility overnight Wednesday into Thursday morning. The advisor added that some Russian forces broke beyond the fence of the plant property. He said Russia has turned the symbol of freedom into hell.
The commander of the Ukrainian forces said the soldiers were gallantly fighting in a bloody and challenging battle. He said he was proud of his men for their superhuman efforts to contain the Russian army.
Ukraine Making Advancements Elsewhere
While Russia’s primary focus is Mariupol, Ukrainian officials said Moscow wants to take the city by May 9 to make it a central focus of celebration. May 9 is an official Russian holiday celebrating victory over Nazi Germany. Will it happen? It’s unlikely to take the last holdout in the steel plant, but Russia does dominate the rest of the city, where it can create video propaganda showing celebrations on the street for the Russian people.
While Russia focuses on Mariupol, Ukrainian forces are scoring small victories elsewhere. Ukrainian military leaders said they regained control over settlements around Mykolaiv and Kherson in the country’s south. Ukraine continues to assert that Russia is experiencing tremendous losses and could plan to use more destructive weapons.
Nonetheless, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said the Ukrainians aren’t afraid, nor should the world fear Russia.
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