war of aggression against Ukraine
Guterres and Zelenskyj discuss evacuation – rocket attacks
The visit of UN chief Guterres to Kyiv gives hope for an evacuation in Mariupol. But during the stay, explosions occur near the city center.
Overshadowed by suspected rocket attacks on Kyiv, UN Secretary-General António Guterres met President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the Ukrainian capital.
After his visit to Moscow, Guterres discussed with the head of government the formation of a refugee corridor for the port city of Mariupol, which had been badly damaged after weeks of fighting. “Mariupol is a crisis within a crisis, thousands of civilians need life-saving assistance,” Guterres said at a press conference after the meeting in Kyiv on Thursday. They need an escape route to escape the “apocalypse”.
During the visit, several explosions occurred near the capital’s city center. “In the evening the enemy shelled Kyiv: two explosions in the Shevchenko district,” said Mayor Vitali Klitschko on his Telegram channel. According to civil protection, a residential building was hit. According to preliminary information, six people were injured. Ukrainian Presidential Advisor Mikhail Podoliak said that not long ago Guterres was sitting in the Kremlin and “today there are explosions just a kilometer away from him. Is that a greeting from Moscow?” Guterres told the BBC he was shocked.
Also criticism of the UN Security Council
At the press conference with Zelensky, Guterres also criticized the UN Security Council for not doing everything in its power to prevent the war. “This is a source of great disappointment, frustration and anger,” he said. But the UN staff would do anything to help the people in Ukraine.
Selenskyj was optimistic after the conversation. According to the Ukrainian news agency Unian, he now believes that the siege of the Azovstal steelworks can be ended and that a “successful result” can be achieved in Mariupol. «We expect from the Russian Federation a humane attitude towards these people»
According to his own account, the UN chief had received a commitment in principle from Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin on Tuesday for the United Nations to participate in the construction of an escape corridor. There are now intensive consultations on how the proposal can be implemented in reality. According to Ukrainian sources, up to 1,000 civilians are locked up in the Azovstal steelworks in addition to soldiers and fighters from the nationalist Azov regiment.
Guterres deeply affected
Before meeting Zelenskyy and Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in Kyiv, Guterres had visited several devastated suburbs and expressed his deep concern. “I picture my family in one of those houses that are now ruined and black. And I see my granddaughters running away in panic,” he said in the small town of Borodyanka.
In the city of Bucha, which has become famous for alleged Russian atrocities, Guterres emphasized that it was important to “carefully investigate” this horror and to hold those responsible to account. Images of dead Ukrainian civilians in Bucha shocked the world earlier this month. More than 400 dead bystanders were found, some with their hands tied behind their backs.