Zelenskyy warns Russian blockade could lead to food shortage

Mariupol officials warn of humanitarian crisis

Mariupol officials are warning that a humanitarian crisis is developing in the city, which is now almost entirely occupied by Russian forces.

“Drinking water is still inaccessible. For the majority of Mariupol residents, it is necessary to go a long way to water supply points (barrels or water carriers),” Petro Andryushchenko, adviser to the city’s Mayor Vadym Boychenko, said Saturday in a Telegram post that was translated by NBC News.

“Food. Situation has not changed. The flow of traders from the surrounding is increasing. But the problem is money to buy this food,” he said.

Andryushchenko added that as many as 170,000 Mariupol residents are without power and have no way to flee the area.

The city’s council and Boychenko also renewed calls for international help to save the Ukrainian soldiers holding out in the Azovstal steel plant.

“We need the involvement of the U.N. and the Red Cross, the leaders of the world’s leading countries,” Boychenko said in a separate statement published on the Mariupol City Council’s Telegram page.

“Therefore, we appeal to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine to use all international instruments to save Ukrainian defenders and conduct an extraction operation. We will fight for the lives of our military, just as they are defending our city,”

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