The heroes who stunned the world – a band of Ukrainian soldiers who defied the power of Russia and fought off invading Russian brutes for 82 days in the Azov Sea city of Mariupol – surrendered to the mercy of bloody Moscow tyrant Vladimir Putin.
This happened in what was supposed to be a prisoner swap deal. Now, this may see them hellishly tortured and executed by the Russians.
Russia Really Hates Heroic Defenders of Mariupol
The defenders of Mariupol spent the last few weeks fighting off Russian attacks from inside Azovstal. This is a vast, Communist Soviet steelworks factory, which remained the last part of Mariupol free of Russian control.
Mariupol was surrounded by Putin’s hordes early on, after the atrocious Russian dictator invaded Ukraine on February 24.
The defenders of Mariupol wowed the world with their bravery, having managed to tie down and beat Russian forces, helping the rest of Ukraine to repulse the invaders.
The Ukrainian troops in Mariupol consist mostly of troops from the Azov regiment, a unit that was instrumental in stopping the first Russian invasion of Ukraine back in 2014.
They left Putin’s troops back then unable to connect the important parts of Ukrainian territory that they managed to occupy.
Because of that, and their valiant fight in the current invasion, the Azov troops are believed to be particularly hated by murderous Russian dictator Vladimir Putin.
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) May 18, 2022
The last defenders of Mariupol have been taken to a Russian prison colony where they face trial as “Nazi war criminals” https://t.co/Xrj8K4zX6S
— The Times (@thetimes) May 18, 2022
Hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers who made a last stand against Russian forces from a Mariupol steel mill faced an uncertain future Tuesday under Kremlin custody. They were transported to Russian-held territory aboard buses emblazoned with “Z." https://t.co/cfXE2DKpvW
— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 17, 2022
Defenders of Mariupol are heroes, they gave everything they had, and much, much more.
Any agreement that saves their lives is 100% worth taking.
— Oleksiy Sorokin (@mrsorokaa) May 16, 2022
One of the last photographs taken inside the Azovstal Steel Plant, Mariupol. pic.twitter.com/VNaCG4slBd
— Jimmy (@JimmySecUK) May 17, 2022
#Russia #Ukraine Russia-Ukraine war latest news: first war crimes trial to begin in Kyiv amid fears for Azovstal soldiers – live: Concerns grow for welfare of 250 Ukrainian fighters who surrendered to Russian forces in Mariupol after weeks of… https://t.co/kefIGMu8Lz
— Sol (@Sol_Danmeri) May 18, 2022
Ukraine Relies on Highest ‘International Mediators’
On Monday and Tuesday, however, two groups of Ukrainian troops, up to a total of 959 service personnel, laid down arms, came out of the Azovstal plant, and surrendered to Russians, The Daily Mail reported.
Senior representatives of the Ukrainian government made it clear the surrender is intended to be part of a prisoner of war swap deal with Moscow.
Under this deal, surviving defenders of Mariupol would be saved by exchanging them for captured Russians.
The Ukrainian government abstained from giving any details, apparently seeking to make sure a POW swap deal actually takes place.
As of Wednesday evening local time, great uncertainty about the fate of surrendered Ukrainian hero fighters was looming. There are fears they may be severely tortured and even executed by the Putin regime as revenge for their heroism.
It remains unclear whether Russians have any intention to honor a POW swap deal with Ukraine, considering the fact they have a clear history of violating numerous goodwill promises they’ve given.
To matters worse, initial reports said healthy Ukrainian troops from Mariupol have been taken to concentration camps set up by Russians in the town of Olenivka.
Here, Ukrainian soldiers have previously been tortured, humiliated, and faced with execution threats.
Ukraine’s leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy commented only the “most influential international mediators” are taking part in negotiations with Russians to save the lives of Mariupol heroes.
Considering Putin’s and Russians’ hatred for Ukrainians and the Azov fighters, in particular, along with Russia’s history of violating every promise it’s made, the prospect remains doubtful.
10 year old Illia Matviienko from #Mariupol and his mom were hit by 🇷🇺 bomb. Mom dragged Ilia to safety and died hugging him. 🇷🇺 troops kidnapped the boy to #Donetsk, but his grandma crossed four borders and saved him. #Kyiv 🏥 was able to save his leg, he will walk again. pic.twitter.com/htWoZUKeAO
— Anton Gerashchenko (@Gerashchenko_en) May 15, 2022
— KyivPost (@KyivPost) May 18, 2022
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) May 18, 2022
These are the indicative estimates of Russia’s combat losses as of May 18, according to the Armed Forces of Ukraine. pic.twitter.com/EM0NQ2MRrk
— The Kyiv Independent (@KyivIndependent) May 18, 2022
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) May 17, 2022