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Ukraine says that with the kidnapping of the mayor of the southern Ukrainian city of Melitopol, the Russian occupiers have violated international law. Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry has said that holding civilians as hostages in war is a war crime. Russia has not yet said anything about the fate of Mayor Ivan Fedorov.
Melitopol, with a population of about 150,000, soon fell under Russian control after the Russian invasion. In early March, hundreds of civilians demonstrated against the occupation.
President Volodymyr Zelensky called Friday’s kidnapping a “crime against democracy”. He also described the move as a “sign of weakness” by the Russians. “They have entered a new phase of terrorism where they are trying to physically eliminate representatives of the legitimate local Ukrainian authorities,” the president said.
Also check out President Zelensky’s reaction to the kidnapping:
Meanwhile, residents of Melitopol took to the streets to protest the kidnapping. Hundreds of brave people put their fear aside to protest.
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