Russian forces bomb a railway axis and a supply line in eastern Ukraine 2022-04-29 06:12:40

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Azovstal Iron and Steel Works is behind buildings damaged during the Russian attack on the southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine, on April 28.
Azovstal iron and steel works behind buildings damaged during the Russian attack on the southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine, on April 28 (Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters)

A Ukrainian official said Russian forces had sealed off an area in Mariupol, possibly before another attempt to storm the Azovstal steel plant.

“Currently, the occupiers have closed the Left Bank district square of Veselka Park again. This may be due to another attempt to storm Azovstal or street fights,” said Petro Andruchenko, advisor to the Mayor of Mariupol.

Veselka Park is located north of Azovstal.

Androchenko also spoke of Russian efforts to take on more government jobs in Mariupol.

He said that the allies of the Russians in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic were trying to “nationalize” Ukrainian possessions, such as the port.

On Thursday, DPRK President Denis Pushlin said the seaport had been cleared and reconstruction had begun, and “the port will be fully operational, and we plan to send the first shipment in May.”

Androchenko also said that the Russians had also begun to conduct a property census in parts of Mariupol, “despite public objections.”

Apartment buildings badly damaged during the Russian attack on Mariupol, Ukraine, on April 28.
Apartment buildings that were badly damaged during the Russian attack on Mariupol, Ukraine, on April 28 (Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters)

He said the census will assess the condition of the high-rise buildings in the southern coastal city, as well as the remaining apartments and their owners.

Androchenko added: “Yesterday in Mariupol, the occupiers issued the first birth certificate for the last month. For the first time in Mariupol, a Russian terrorist satellite officially stole the citizenship of our Ukrainian child.”

Androshenko’s comments came hours after the Ukrainian president’s office announced that a renewed effort would be made to get civilians out of the besieged Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol.

Some basic information: In recent days, Russian forces have escalated their attacks on the sprawling Azovstal industrial complex, as part of their effort to completely take Mariupol.

Yury Raginkov, CEO of Metinvest Holding Company that owns the plant, called the scene a “human catastrophe”.

Raginkov: “The city has actually been under siege for about two months. And the Russians, they don’t let us bring food into the city or water into the city.” He told CNN.

Built in 1933 under Soviet rule, the factory was partially demolished during the Nazi occupation in the 1940s before being rebuilt.

Now he’s gone again – his carcass harbored Ukrainian soldiers and about 1,000 civilians in a maze of underground rooms, according to Ukrainian officials.

Since then, Azovstal has become a symbol of Ukrainian resistance against the ongoing Russian military offensive on Ukraine.

CNN’s Lauren Said Morehouse, Issa Soares, Madalina Araujo, and Oleksandra Ochmann contributed to this post.

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