The decomposing bodies of 200 people were found in the basement of a bombed-out apartment building in battered Mariupol, authorities said Tuesday, the latest in a string of dire discoveries since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began three months ago.
Mayor’s adviser Petro Andryushchenk said local residents had rejected Russia’s demand to collect the bodies of the dead, so the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry left the bodies among the rubble.
Mariupol has been left in ruins by weeks of rocket attacks. Last week, the last Ukrainian fighters surrendered, giving Russia full control of the pre-war city of 450,000. An estimated 100,000 remain. Mayor Vadym Boychenko claims that the Russian bombing of the city killed thousands of civilians.
Earlier, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russia of trying to bring death and destruction to his country.
“There has not been a war like this on the European continent in 77 years,” Zelensky said in his late-night speech.
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►Vladimir Saldo, appointed by Russia as governor of Ukraine’s southern Kherson region, said the area will have a dual currency from Monday: Russian rubles and Ukrainian hryvnyas.
►An experienced Russian diplomat at the UN office in Geneva resigned on Monday, saying he was “ashamed” of his country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Austin: ‘This is not the fight of the United States’
The United States has sent tens of billions of dollars in aid to Ukraine, some of it in military aid. On Saturday, President Joe Biden signed a $40 billion aid package that included more than $20 billion for the Pentagon to supply Ukraine with weapons, intelligence and training.
But the US has refrained from sending US troops to the war-torn country. Returning US troops to Ukraine would require “presidential decisions,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said at a news conference Monday.
“I think this is Ukraine’s struggle,” Austin said. “It is not the struggle of the United States. We are doing everything we can to ensure that we support them in their effort to defend their sovereign territory.”
Meanwhile, Biden told fellow Indo-Pacific leaders who had gathered for a four-nation summit on Tuesday that they were sailing “a dark hour in our shared history” as a result of Russia’s brutal war against Ukraine and urged the group to step up their efforts. to deliver to stop Vladimir. Putin’s aggression.
“This is more than just a European issue. It’s a global issue,” Biden said as the ‘Quad’ summit with Japan, Australia and India kicked off. While he didn’t directly call out a country, Biden’s message appeared, at least in part, to be directed at Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with whom there are still disagreements over how to respond to the Russian invasion.
US and UK accuse Russia of cyber-attacks and spreading disinformation
The United States and Britain accused Russia of manipulating public opinion and spreading disinformation about the war in Ukraine by carrying out cyber attacks and censoring content. Britain’s deputy ambassador James Roscoe told a UN Security Council that Russia has used cyberattacks and “an online troll factory to spread disinformation and manipulate public opinion about their war.”
US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said the Russian government “continues to shut down, restrict and deteriorate internet connectivity, censor content, spread disinformation online and intimidate and arrest journalists for reporting the truth about the invasion.”
Russia has passed strict censorship laws, threatening individuals with up to 15 years in prison for publishing information contrary to Russia’s story about the invasion.
Contributions: The Associated Press