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Russia announces ceasefire around Mariupol steel plant

Published : 25 Apr 2022 09:39 PM | Updated : 26 Apr 2022 03:50 PM

Russia's defence ministry on Monday  announced a ceasefire around the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol to allow a  civilian evacuation from the industrial area that has been sheltering the  remaining Ukrainian resistance in the port city.

Russian troops "from 14:00 Moscow time (1100 GMT) on April 25, 2022, will  unilaterally stop any hostilities, withdraw units to a safe distance and  ensure the withdrawal of" civilians, the defence ministry said in a  statement. 

It said the civilians will be taken "in any direction they have chosen".  It added that the Ukrainian side should show "readiness" to start the  humanitarian evacuations "by raising white flags" at Azovstal. 

According to the ministry, this information will be communicated to those  inside Azovstal "via radio channels" every 30 minutes.  Russia last week said it had gained full 

control of the strategic eastern  Ukrainian city, except for its huge Azovstal industrial area.

President Vladimir Putin ordered a blockade of the steelworks, where hundreds 

of civilians are reportedly sheltering with Ukrainian troops.

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