Residents in Ukraine's Mariupol starving to death after Russian invasion

Mariupol City Council says residents are starving to death, as the Ukrainian port city remains under Russian occupation.

In a message on Telegram, the council explained there have been "more and more deaths from starvation" and said Russian invaders have no compassion for the residents still there.

"I haven't eaten in two days. Weakness. I can't leave the city on foot. It's good that there is a little water," people in the port city in Ukraine's southeast have apparently said, according to the council.

 Civilians are seen in a basement floor as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 18, 2022.
People in Mariupol are forced to seek shelter in their basements amid Russia's invasion. Source: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The council said people are starving because people cannot get food supplies and humanitarian efforts are being quashed by Russian forces.

"More and more deaths from starvation. More and more people are left without any food supplies," Mariupol City Council said.

"And all attempts to launch a large-scale humanitarian operation to save the people of Mariupol are blocked by the Russian side.

"Because the occupiers are not interested in people and their destinies."

City reaches its "limit"

Mariupol lies between Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern areas held by Russian-backed separatists. People have been confined to their basements, sheltering from Russian bombardment, running low on food, water and medicine, with no power.

Just days ago Ukrainian leaders accused Russia of seizing 15 rescue workers and drivers from a humanitarian convoy trying to get desperately needed food and other supplies into the besieged port city of Mariupol.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russian forces of blocking the aid convoy despite agreeing to the route ahead of time in his address to the nation on Tuesday night.

 A local resident pushes a supermarket cart with his belongings leaving Mariupol for some peaceful place on the territory which is under the Government of the Donetsk People's Republic control, on the outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022.
Some residents from Mariupol have been able to flee the conflict. Source: AP

On Telegram, Mariupol City Council thanked those who were trying to provide assistance.

"In an environment where centralised mass evacuation is not possible, we see hundreds and thousands of inspired examples of mutual assistance," the Telegram post said.

"We are grateful to the volunteers and caring people who help to take Mariupol residents out of the zone of active hostilities every day."

However, the council said it has reached its "limit", saying tougher sanctions against Russia were needed, as is aid for Ukrainian forces.

"To save hundreds of thousands of people in Mariupol. Save from hell and the endless circle of bullying. Save all other cities of our country from the terrible fate of Mariupol," the council said.

The city has also come under naval attack after weeks of air and land strikes and Mr Zelensky estimated 100,000 civilians remained in Mariupol.

Those that made it out described a shattered city with bodies lying in the streets.

Mariupol residents are dying of starvation, the city council said on Telegram. Source: ASS/Sipa USA via AAP
Mariupol residents are dying of starvation, the city council said on Telegram. Source: ASS/Sipa USA via AAP

"They bombed us for the past 20 days," said 39-year-old Viktoria Totsen, who fled into Poland.

"During the last five days, the planes were flying over us every five seconds and dropped bombs everywhere — on residential buildings, kindergartens, art schools, everywhere."

Earlier this week it was reported, thousands of Mariupol residents were allegedly deported to Russia "illegally" over the course of several days.

Euromaiden Press reported the residents were "taken to filtration camps" and had their phones and documents inspected, some were taken to remote cities in Russia.

However, the fate of many was "unknown".

With Associated Press and Reuters

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