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Watch Views of Wrecked Mariupol Airport After Ukrainian Army's Retreat

© Sputnik / Viktor Antonyuk / Go to the mediabankA serviceman is seen at Mariupol airport that came under the control of the Donetsk People's Republic, DPR
A serviceman is seen at Mariupol airport that came under the control of the Donetsk People's Republic, DPR - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.03.2022
Mariupol is currently blocked by forces of the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) who encircled the city earlier in March and began to clear it of Ukrainian troops and extremist battalions, including the Azov Regiment.
Sputnik correspondents have published the first video of the Mariupol airport, which was earlier liberated from Ukrainian forces and nationalist battalions, as part of Russia's ongoing special military operation in Ukraine.
The footage taken from a drone shows trenches and craters near a runway, as well as bas-reliefs with mosaic of Lenin's mausoleum inside a terminal with broken windows, and a demolished control tower.

"The airport is completely empty now. There are no military and no civilians, with just hungry cats running across the empty building. There are no planes either. Shots from small arms are being heard somewhere nearby. Probably, the cleansing of the nearest villages is under way", a drone operator said.

This comes as Mariupol is gradually coming under the control of Russian troops and forces of the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR). The Russian Defence Ministry said last week that the humanitarian situation in Mariupol had reached catastrophic proportions due to Ukrainian nationalist battalions, who do not want to lay down their arms and prevent tens of thousands of civilians from leaving the city.
On 24 February, Moscow launched a special military operation to demilitarise and de-Nazify Ukraine after weeks of escalating shelling, sabotage, and sniper attacks by Ukrainian forces against the Donbass republics, whose predominantly Russian-speaking population has been subjected to "abuse and genocide […] for eight years", according to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Moscow has repeatedly stated that the goal of the operation is to neutralise Ukraine's military capacity and not harm the civilian population of the country.
In April 2014, Mariupol was the second-largest city in DPR after Donetsk, but in June of that year, the Ukrainian security forces regained control of the area. On 7 March 2022, Alexander Semyonov, deputy commander of the DPR's Vostok battalion, said that the cleansing of some of Mariupol's districts from Ukrainian forces and nationalist battalions, including the Azov Regiment, had begun as part of the Russian special operation.
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