Day 73 of Putin's war. Russians shell Odesa, Ukraine evacuates all civilians from AzovStal factory in Mariupol

7 May, 09:41 AM
AzovStal steel factory in Mariupol (Photo:REUTERS/Alexander Ermochenko)

AzovStal steel factory in Mariupol (Photo:REUTERS/Alexander Ermochenko)

Today, May 7, is the 73rd day of Ukraine's defense against a full-scale Russian invasion. Russians continue to attack civilian targets in Ukraine as they prepare for their self-imposed May 9 "Victory Day" celebrations.

1922: Ukraine has evacuated all women, children, and elderly from the Azovstal steel factory, the last Ukrainian stronghold in Mariupol.

"This stage of the humanitarian operation is over," said Ukraine's reintegration minister Iryna Vereshchuk

Earlier it was reported that up to 1,000 civilians were hiding in the underground shelter of the factory with Ukrainian servicemen.  For more than two months Russia prevented Ukraine from evacuating even civilians, and only relented when the UN agreed to mediate the evacuation.

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Up to 1,000 Ukrainian servicemen are still fighting in Mariupol. Some 600 soldiers are wounded. Vereshchuk has requested Doctors without Borders to assist in the evacuation of Ukrainian defenders. 

1902: Ukrainian forces liberated the village Tsyrkuny in Kharkiv Oblast, the Ukrainian Army General Staff has reported. 

1634: Russian missiles have struck Odesa. Locals heard several strong explosions in the city.

Russian troops struck Odesa with six missiles fired from strategic bombers. Four missiles hit infrastructure.  Information about casualties is being verified. Two missiles hit the previously destroyed airport runway, Serhii Bratchuk, the chairman of the Public Council at the Odesa Regional State Administration, said in a statement.

Meanwhile, in Sumy Oblast, a Ukrainian border guard was injured in a massive Russian bombardment of the communities of Myropilska and Khotynska .

1422: Russia shelled 15 settlements in Donetsk Oblast over the past day, the National Police of Ukraine has reported.

During the past day, Russian troops attacked the following settlements - Mariupol, Siversk, Toretsk, Avdiivka, Marinka, Svyatogorsk, Zalizne, Druzhkivka, New York, North, Drobysheve, Rai-Oleksandrivka, Yarova, and Dronivka Pokrovske.

In the morning the Russians shelled Bakhmut.

1411: Russia fired four missiles at Odesa Oblast, Ukrainian Operative Command South has reported. No casualties reported so far.

"Four cruise missiles were fired at Odesa Oblast. The enemy continues not only the physical destruction of the region's infrastructure but also its psychological pressure on the civilian population, "the military said in a statement.

1305: A 15-year-old girl drove 30 kilometers from Popasna to Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast with injured legs.

The girls, called Lisa, took three wounded men and a woman to hospital and saved their lives after Russians shelled the car they were in. The people were not her relatives, but the girl said she could not leave them to die. Luhansk Oblast Governor Serhiy Haidai shared her story in a Telegram message on May 6. 

Today Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs also shared a video of 15-year-old Lisa talking to a doctor in an ambulance.

1146: Russia has already lost 25,100 soldiers killed in action in Ukraine since Feb. 24, Ukraine's General Staff has reported.

Russian invading forces have destroyed three bridges in Kharkiv Oblast to slow down the Ukrainian counteroffensive, the Ukrainian Army General Staff has reported. Yesterday, the Ukrainian army liberated five settlements in Kharkiv Oblast, and it continues to push the invaders back to the Russian border. 

Retreating Russians continue to shell Kharkiv Oblast. Kharkiv Governor Oleh Synehubov has reported Russians shelled the Museum of Ukrainian philosopher Hryhoriy Skovoroda in Skovorodivka village in Kharkiv Oblast. 

As a result, the building of the museum was completely destroyed and the caretaker was wounded. 

Early in the morning Russian invading forces shelled the town of Karlivka in Poltava Oblast.  The information about the scale of damage and casualties is still being clarified, Poltava governor Dmytro Lunin said in a statement.

In Kherson Oblast, the invaders stated that all residents of Kherson Oblast will have the right to acquire Russian citizenship. They also intend to return the coat of arms of the Russian Empire to the occupied territories.

Yesterday, Russian Senator Andrey Turchak visited Kherson Oblast and said that "the region will stay with Russia forever".

"There will be no return to the past," Turchak said.

Today Ukraine will continue attempts to evacuate people from Mariupol. 

President Volodymyr Zelensky said that "influential states" had been involved in rescuing the Ukrainian soldiers who still remain at the Azovstal factory in Mariupol. An evacuation mission from Mariupol is currently underway with the mediation of the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross, he said.

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