Russia has occupied the entire city of Mariupol since May 20 after the Ukrainian port city was besieged and bombed for nearly 80 days. Since then, there has been little news – independent – from Mariupol and even less non-Russian photos of what the city looks like now. Ukrainian government advisor Anton Gerashchenko recently shared a video of a tour of the devastated city and Reuters correspondent Alexander Ermoshenko was able to capture photos of the ruins in Mariupol in late October.
When the settled Azov plant was captured, the last Ukrainian stronghold fell and the city fell completely into the hands of Russia. But during the siege, 90 percent of Mariupol was destroyed. This devastation is still clearly visible in recent photographs.
The images distributed via Reuters give foreigners a unique glimpse into the port city, which has now been occupied by Russia for about six months.
The photos show that many buildings and apartment complexes have been reduced to uninhabitable ruins.
When Russia occupied the city, the reconstruction of Mariupol began immediately, according to Russian media.
According to UN official figures, 1,348 civilians were killed during the siege of the city, which is located on the Sea of Azov and near the Russian border. The actual death toll is feared to be much higher. Of the 440,000 residents who lived there before the war, fewer than 100,000 remain.
The historic, stable Azov plant has been in the news for weeks as dozens of Ukrainian soldiers hid in a network of driveways beneath the plant. In mid-May, the last fighters surrendered and were taken as prisoners of war. According to the Russian news agency TASS, Russia plans to invest $831 million in the region to turn the destroyed plant into an “industrial industrial park, logistics and transportation hub.”