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People in the besieged city of Mariupol must urgently be protected from harm

Statement
Strasbourg 20/04/2022
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An aerial view shows damaged residential buildings in the southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine April 18, 2022. REUTERS/Pavel Klimov

An aerial view shows damaged residential buildings in the southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine April 18, 2022. REUTERS/Pavel Klimov

As the fighting around the besieged steel plant in the ruined city of Mariupol intensifies, there is growing uncertainty and concern about the life and human rights of those who still remain in the areas under siege.  

Many civilians, among them women, children and older persons, reportedly still remain trapped in areas of Mariupol besieged by the Russian forces. For many weeks, they have been surviving under dire conditions and with scant supplies. They should immediately be provided with humanitarian corridors to enable them to evacuate to safety.

It must be recalled that international humanitarian law must be respected in all circumstances, also in relation to captured soldiers and those who surrender, as well as the wounded and sick. They must be treated humanely and with respect for their inherent dignity and basic human rights.