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Russia: 1,000 Ukrainians have surrendered at Azovstal Steel Plant

The Russian Defense Ministry has said nearly 1,000 Ukrainian soldiers have surrendered at the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol since Monday.

Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Wednesday that a total of 959 Ukrainian soldiers, including 80 wounded, had laid down their arms and surrendered since May 16.

He reaffirmed that 51 wounded were sent to the hospital at Novoazovsk, which is in the self-declared region of the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR).

Konashenkov said that in the past day alone 694 Ukrainian "militants" had surrendered at Azovstal.

The DPR gave similar figures, saying that altogether 962 Ukrainian soldiers have surrendered since May 16.

The Ukrainian side has not given an update on the number who have left Azovstal nor on the status of negotiations for their exchange for Russian prisoners.

Most of the Azovstal soldiers appear to have been taken to Olenivka, a town near the front lines but in territory controlled by the DPR.

Some background: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Tuesday the negotiation process on evacuating the last soldiers from the Azovstal steel plant continues with Russia.

It follows the end of Ukrainian forces' "combat mission" at the complex, which was for weeks the last major holdout in a city otherwise occupied by Russian troops.

Ukraine said it expects to carry out an exchange of Russian prisoners of war for the severely injured soldiers.

 

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