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Over the past few weeks, DPR troops, together with the Russian military, have been clearing Mariupol (the second-largest city in the republic) of the remaining forces of Ukrainian radicals, including the Azov nationalist battalion.
The militia of the Donetsk People's Republic, along with Russian military forces, have seized control over downtown Mariupol, the spokesman for DPR troops Eduard Basurin announced on Monday. He noted that the areas around the port and the industrial zone are still to be cleared, so an operation is underway in the city.
Meanwhile, at least 7 civilians were wounded as Ukrainian forces shelled the part of the city liberated by the militia, the DPR said in a separate statement.
Kiev previously tried to evacuate the leadership of the neo-Nazi Azov battalion, encircled by Russian and Donbass troops in the city. However, Russian forces downed the helicopters sent for the evacuation of the radicals.
Mariupol, Russian forces took Azov Batallion and took them for a walk through the City presenting them to the population, people yelling the Batallion Killers, you will burn in hell. NAZI Batallion terminated.https://t.co/o2XkRhx55Q
The fighting in Mariupol continues, as Russian forces and Donbass militias are advancing in the region amid the special operation launched by Moscow in February, while Ukraine has intensified its attacks against the DPR and LPR.
Russian President Vladimir Putin stressed that the special military operation's main goal was to stop the genocide in Donbass, where thousands have been killed over the past eight years in a war waged against them by Kiev. He stressed that Russia's goal is to demilitarize and denazify Ukraine and hold those who committed atrocities accountable.