December 2, 2022

Raven Tribune

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Putin cancels Mariupol steel plant storm – is that an excuse?

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the siege of the long-competing Mariupol steel plant. good news? Military experts fear the opposite.

Two messages were sent during a televised conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. First: The Russian army finally captured the southeastern port of Mariupol in Ukraine. Thousands of Ukrainian soldiers and civilians are said to be lurking in the Azovstal industrial area alone.

Message number two: The industrial site should no longer be attacked. Putin ordered that. The order must be revoked. New order: “To prevent this industry from getting even a fly out.”

Vladimir Putin (left) and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (right): They said on state television that Mariupol was completely captured. (Source: Russian Origin / Imego Images)

The fighters in the catacombs must lay down their weapons. “The Russian side guarantees their lives,” Putin said. He spoke of victory and “Mariupol liberation” and ordered the concerned military officers to decorate.

Experts fear chemical attack

A measure to prevent unwanted bleeding? Immediately after the announcement, military experts criticized. Carlo Masala of Bundeswehr University in Munich tweeted: “I translate: he (Putin, note d. Author) And does not want to lose his own people. ”That is why he allows militants and civilians on the industrial site to starve and thirst.

Experts fear another scenario: the use of chemical weapons. Janice Glck, a Russian expert from the German Scientific and Political Foundation, tweeted: “If a chemical attack is planned on the Azovstell tunnel system, this announcement will be the first step.” Spice also thinks it is possible.

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Strategic reasons are also possible

Soldiers and civilians have been detained for several days in the tunnel system. The use of chemical weapons on an industrial site has long been feared by experts. With them, Russia can turn the situation that has been a stumbling block for many days in its favor. Since April 12, there have been reports of the use of chemical weapons in Mariupol. At the time, chemical weapons expert Mark-Michael Plum saw it as “not a big game changer” in an interview with D-Online.

The expert also brings up strategic reasons for the spice announcement: “He (Putin, editorial) Its troops are needed in the east. “

For example, although much of Luhansk was already under Russian control, no progress was made this week despite intense attacks. The information cannot be verified independently, but it agrees with the assessment of Western secret services. According to US sources, the large-scale Russian offensive in the Donbass has not yet taken place. This may require additional forces.

Back to the Mariupol situation: According to Defense Minister Shoiku, Ukrainian units are completely blocked. He insisted that the factory be taken over in three to four days. There are also foreign mercenaries. The minister said no one had left the plant through the humanitarian routes provided. Earlier, the Ukrainian side proposed talks on the fate of the militants and the rescue of civilians who had taken refuge in the plant.

Mariupol was surrounded by Russian troops on February 24, shortly after the start of the war of aggression against Ukraine on Putin’s orders. The city was largely destroyed in the war.

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