Mariupol Explodes in Violence on Ukraine's Victory Day, Interior Minister Claims 20 Dead Pro-Russians
Mariupol, Ukraine erupted on Victory Day and Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said there are at least 20 dead pro-Russian forces. However, people on the ground in Mariupol report the local government confirmed four dead while other say two or eight.
Mariupol is one of the important industrial towns in Donetsk Oblast and violence has escalated the past few weeks. Pro-Russian forces captured the government buildings and Reuters reports pro-Ukrainians attempted to retake the town.
"A terrorist group of about 60 men armed with automatic weapons attacked the police headquarters...About 20 terrorists were destroyed and four taken prisoner," Avakov said on his Facebook page.
"To those who come with weapons and who shoot and who take hostages, torture them, rob people, hiding behind various slogans - to them there can be only one answer from the Ukrainian state - annihilation."
"Everyone decides for himself. The situation has become black-white...Enough politicking, foolish behavior and posturing," he said.
The Kyiv Post is reporting the pro-Russian forces kidnapped Mariupol police chief Valeriy Androshchuk.
He “fought until the end” but “terrorists” took him from the “burning police station in a car that was cut off by a sports utility vehicle,” wrote [lawmaker Oleh] Liashko. “The fighters stabbed the jeep driver with a knife and placed Androshchuk inside the car trunk and drove off in an unknown direction.”
Mariopol media outlet 0629 reported a sniper killed Serhiy Demydenko, commander of the Dnipropetrovsk Brigade near the police headquarters. Eyewitnesses told 0629 “terrorists took Demydenko’s dead body and cut his ears off and gauged his eyes.”
Journalists on the scene tweeted videos and pictures in Mariupol. IMAGES AND VIDEOS CONTAIN GRAPHIC CONTENT.