What did Putin do in Mariupol?
- Russia’s Tass news agency reported that Putin arrived in Mariupol, which Russia has controlled since the start of the Ukraine war last year, as part of a “business trip”.
- She added that he arrived in the city, which is located in the Donetsk region in the Donbass region in eastern Ukraine, via a helicopter, and he also moved around several regions while driving a car.
- The agency said he inspected a number of projects in the city and spoke to residents there.
- Putin heard details from officials about the progress of reconstruction and restoration work in the port city.
- During the visit, Putin met the commander of Russian military operations in Ukraine and a number of military leaders.
This is Putin’s first visit to Ukrainian territory controlled by his forces since the start of the war.
On Saturday, Putin visited Crimea, on the ninth anniversary of its annexation to Russia.
During that visit, Putin drove an SUV himself.
Information about Mariupol
- The city of Mariupol was bombed by Russia on the first day of the war (February 24, 2022), then it was besieged at the beginning of March, before it fell into the hands of Russian forces in late April of that year.
- The city overlooking the Sea of Azov, branching from the Black Sea, is one of Russia’s most important strategic goals in the war.
- Russia considered that Mariupol became part of its territory after it annexed it to it following the referendum that took place in September 2020.
- Residents of 4 Ukrainian regions that have been controlled by Russia since the start of the war took part in the referendum.
- Mariupol became Russian because it is part of the Donetsk region, but Ukraine and behind it the West refused to recognize this annexation.
- Its strategic importance is due to its geographical location, as it has the largest port on the Sea of Azov.
- In April 2014, the city became part of the separatist Republic of Donetsk (unilaterally declared), before the Ukrainian authorities regained it in June of the same year as a result of an offensive operation waged by regular army forces and members of the Azov Battalion.
- Since that time, Mariupol has become an important military and political center for the Ukrainian authorities on the line of contact between the two parties to the armed conflict in Donbass, but it eventually fell into the hands of the Russians.
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