Ivan Štefanec, leading a group of 50 MEPs, urged the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission Josep Borrell to urgently engage in negotiations between the UN, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Ukrainian government to develop a plan for the evacuation of civilians and military personnel from the Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol. According to Ivan Štefanec, MEP and Head of the Slovak delegation to the EPP Group in the European Parliament, the lives of Azovstal defenders and Mariupol residents hang in the balance as the Russian army has already infiltrated the plant and is destroying the infrastructure for a potential evacuation. The situation is a humanitarian catastrophe, he said, with the local population lacking access to food, medicine and basic sanitation.
"Despite all the atrocities committed by the Russian army and the desire of thousands of Mariupol residents to leave the war zone, the Russian authorities are not allowing humanitarian corridors to open or are constantly disrupting them with massive shelling."
Note to editors
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 176 Members from all EU Member States