“We will fight to the end,” says a Ukrainian officer from the besieged city of Mariupol

“The fighting is fierce, it’s an urban guerrilla war. It’s a street fight, but there is no real front line.”. This is the situation in Mariupol that was described on Wednesday, April 13 There is Samoylenko, Ukrainian officer of the Azov regiment fighting in Mariupol. About 3,000 Ukrainian soldiers are still in the city, which has been under siege by the Russian army for more than a month.

Ilya Samoylenko, Ukrainian officer of the Azov regiment, tells of the hell of fighting in Mariupol – The report of Omar Ouahmane and Gilles Gallinaro


On the ground, the Ukrainian armed forces are preparing for the fall of the city, but do not want to give in and demand “Aid from the West, which has not supported us militarily for eight years. I am very grateful to the countries that have been supplying arms to Ukraine since February 24, says Ilya Samoylenko. But we in Mariupol, besieged by the Russians, got nothing.” In particular, the officer demands heavy weapons, “more efficient”to face the Russians after they kill some “at least 2,000”, he assures.

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He insists: “We’ve been fighting for over a month and a half without artillery support and without air support, without supplies.” There is Samoylenko describes a bitter struggle: “NOTWe will fight to the end. We will not surrender. We will not fight to the death, but to victory”. The fighting takes place on a field of rubble, the city is already largely devastated by Russian fighting and bombing.

Ilya Samoylenko, a Ukrainian officer in the Azov regiment, recounts the fighting in Mariupol, a besieged city in Ukraine.  (FRANCE INFO / RADIOFRANCE)

According to this official the staff of the Azov regiment, an originally paramilitary group formed at the time of the Donbass War by an ultra-nationalist leader who still wears SS insignia of the Das Reich division and has been part of the Ukrainian army since 2014are russian “to use Airplanes bombing indiscriminately, bombs falling on houses, civilians, hospitals and theaters.. When he soon runs out of ammunition, he assures us that the Russians are razing the city district by district.

On the ground, the situation is desperate, a living hell for the civilians trapped in the midst of the fighting and deprived of their lives. If the combatants still have limited supplies of water and food, this officer indicates that the residents trapped there have nothing left, and “Suffer hunger”.

“Russia is trying to block any humanitarian aid from the Ukrainian side. A real genocide! And then the Russians kidnap and expel the residents of the occupied areas of Mariupol.”

Ilya Samoylenko, officer of the Azov regimental staff

at franceinfo

Ilya Samoylenko claims to have had in her hands “Leaflets distributed to civilians announcing their ‘relocation’ to the far east of Russia, for example to Vladivostok or Kamchatka.”

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On the spot while “Civilians are dying on the streets”, the officer fights every day so that the whole city does not fall into the hands of the Russians. He would also like to point out that if “The enemy is already in town, they don’t control everything, contrary to what they claim”. “Russia may have taken a third of Mariupol, but now they’re locked in urban warfare. To claim total control of an area, they have to sweep everything away. What the Russian army does with its indiscriminate bombing,” he explains. The addition “The Russians are violating all the laws of war, all international treaties”.

“They used banned ammunition and even chemical weapons in Mariupol yesterday. We can’t say what it was because we don’t have a lab, but the residents showed unusual symptoms.”

Ilya Samoylenko

at franceinfo

Like Ilya Samoylenko, 3,000 Ukrainian soldiers are still in defensive positions in Mariupol.  (OMAR OUAHMANE / RADIO FRANCE)

For Ilia Samoylenko, Russia is in “It’s committing thousands of war crimes here in Mariupol. And she tries very hard to hide her dirty secrets. How does she do it? She shaves everything, so without proof there is no penalty!” When asked what would happen to him if he decided to surrender to the Russians, the officer replies: “If I surrendered, they would torture me, they would maim me, they would do that to me”. The impending fall of Mariupol is likely to accelerate the second phase of Russia’s offensive aimed at the since-controversial annexation of the Donbass region 2014

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