Saturday, May 28, 2022
HomeworldDespite Putin's 'big show' over Mariupol victory, it's still 'contested': Pentagon

Despite Putin’s ‘big show’ over Mariupol victory, it’s still ‘contested’: Pentagon

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Friday that the U.S. believes Mariupol is “contested” despite Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday declaring a victory there and making a “big show” out of telling his troops not to invade a steel factory where Ukrainian soldiers and civilians are believed to be taking cover. 

Kirby made the remarks to CNN after Putin waved off the Russian military assault in an apparent bid to free up his troops for the broader campaign in the east. Putin instead called for a blockade of the factory. 

Kirby said it was “unclear” why Putin did that and Putin’s words need to be viewed with skepticism. 

A convoy of pro-Russian troops moves along a road in Mariupol, Ukraine, on Thursday, April 21.

A convoy of pro-Russian troops moves along a road in Mariupol, Ukraine, on Thursday, April 21.
(REUTERS/Chingis Kondarov)

RUSSIA INVADES UKRAINE: LIVE UPDATES 

“They made this big show yesterday of him saying he wasn’t gonna go into that plant and try to eradicate the people that are there,” Kirby told CNN on Friday. “I think we have to watch and see what the Russians actually do here.” 

“We would tell you this morning is that we still assess that Mariupol is contested, that it hasn’t been taken by the Russians and that there’s still an active Ukrainian resistance,” he continued. “So they continue to fight for that city.” 

Fighters of the Chechen special forces unit walk in a courtyard in Mariupol, Ukraine, on Thursday, April 21.

Fighters of the Chechen special forces unit walk in a courtyard in Mariupol, Ukraine, on Thursday, April 21.
(REUTERS/Chingis Kondarov)

 

President Biden, speaking to reporters Thursday, said at the time “there is no evidence yet that Mariupol has completely fallen,” calling Putin’s claims of victory there “questionable.” 

Biden said Russia should allow residents and civilians holed up in the steel factory and other places there to evacuate safely. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

RELATED ARTICLES

Most Popular