Sun. Jun 4th, 2023

    Putin’s tour of Mariupol is like a murderer returning to the scene of a crime, Ukrainian official says

    Ukrainian emergency employees and volunteers carry an injured pregnant woman from the maternity hospital that was damaged by shelling in Mariupol, Ukraine, on March 9, 2022.

    Vladimir Putin’s visit to the occupied region of Mariupol on Sunday was criticized by Ukrainians.
    Ukrainian officials have estimated that 25,000 people died in Mariupol during the war.
    Putin’s visit comes two days after the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for his arrest.

    Ukrainians critical of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s surprise visit to occupied regions of Ukraine, including the war-torn city of Mariupol, are comparing the trip to a criminal returning to a crime scene. 

    Putin began his tour of Ukraine on Saturday, two days after the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for his arrest, in the annexed region of Crimea before driving to Mariupol, on his first-ever trip to the Donbas region.

    Photos that emerged from the trip showed Putin speaking with residents and driving himself around the region at night.

    In a Sunday tweet, Mykhailo Podolyak, an advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, called Putin the “murderer of thousands of Mariupol families.” 

    “The criminal always returns to the crime scene,” Podolyak wrote. “As the civilized world announces the arrest of the “war director” (VV Putin) in case of crossing its borders, the murderer of thousands of Mariupol families came to admire the ruins of the city & graves. Cynicism & lack of remorse.”

    —Михайло Подоляк (@Podolyak_M) March 19, 2023

    Ukrainian officials have estimated that 25,000 people have died in the fighting between Russia and Ukraine, with 5-7,000 of them dying under the rubble of buildings.

    Mariupol bombing survivor Maria Kutnyakova used a similar metaphor to Podolyak’s, comparing Putin’s visit to the region to “when a serial killer returns to the place of the crime” while speaking with CNN.

    Kutnyakova also told CNN she believed Putin visited the region at night to obscure the destruction in the city. 

    “They didn’t want to show that Mariupol is still a catastrophe. There are a lot of destroyed buildings. That people live in a bad situation,” Kutnyakova told CNN.

    It has been a little over a year since Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, which set off a conflict that has cost Ukraine and Russia hundreds of thousands of lives and resulted in billions in aid and continued support of the war effort from the Biden administration. 

    Currently, Russian soldiers in the brutal Wagner Group — made up of thousands of prisoners and mercenaries — are engaged in a tense, bloody battle for the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut. Some military experts from the think tank Institute for the Study of War also believe that the battle is being used by the Russian defense ministry to diminish the Wagner Group’s numbers as their feud escalates.

    Representatives for the Kremlin did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

    Read the original article on Business Insider


    Generated by Feedzy