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Russia To Open Humanitarian Corridor From Mariupol On Friday

Russia’s Defense Ministry announced Thursday that it will open a humanitarian corridor Friday morning from the Ukrainian city of Mariupol to Zaporizhzhia following a personal request from French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to President Vladimir Putin.

“The Russian Armed Forces will reopen a humanitarian corridor from Mariupol to Zaporizhzhia on April 1 from 10 a.m.” Moscow time (0700GMT), said Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev, director of the Russian National Center for Defense Management.

Noting that humanitarian corridors are opened daily in the direction of Ukraine’s capital Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv and Mariupol, Mizintsev said the Russian army was complying with a cease-fire at these points.

He further noted that in the last 24 hours, more than 18,000 people, including 3,400 children, were evacuated to Russia from dangerous regions of Ukraine.

“A total of 527,607 people have been evacuated since the start of the special military operation, including 108,219 children,” he said, adding 115,347 people have been rescued from Mariupol via humanitarian corridors, including 3,235 in the last 24 hours.

The Russia-Ukraine war, which started on Feb. 24, has been met with international outrage, with the European Union, US and UK among others implementing tough financial sanctions on Moscow.

At least 1,232 civilians have been killed in Ukraine and 1,935 injured, according to UN estimates, with the true figure feared to be far higher.

More than 4 million Ukrainians have also fled to neighboring countries, with millions more displaced inside the country, according to the UN refugee agency.