Russian occupiers in the Azov coast port city of Mariupol are only distributing anti-cholera drugs to their own troops, ignoring the city’s Ukrainian residents de-spite the risk of a widespread outbreak, said immunologist Fedir Lapiy on national TV on June 13.
He also added that the Russians are indifferent to the fate of local residents in regards to cholera.
“They take care of their own by providing special tablets for water purification, because the main cause of the spread of cholera is a lack of access to clean drinking water,” Lapiy said.
He pointed out that in order to receive clean water, city residents need to sign up a few days in advance.
People don’t have gas at their apartments to boil water,” he said.
“That forces them to go outside and use firewood. We know that people have to sign up a few days in advance to get clean drinking water in Mariupol. Thus, there is a significant limitation in the availability of this water.”
On June 6, an advisor to the mayor of Mariupol, Petro Andryushchenko, announced that the Russian occupation authorities had closed Mariupol off, ostensibly for quarantine. The World Health Organization has begun preparations for a possible cholera out-break in the city.
Mariupol was blockaded by the Russian invaders for over three months. The actions of the Russian military have led to a large-scale humanitarian catastrophe. The invaders bombarded the city's residential areas and civilian infrastructure, and blocked humanitarian aid, killing at least 25,000 residents.
Vadym Boychenko, Mariupol’s mayor, reported that due to problems with the supply of water, the city is threatened with an outbreak that could lead to the deaths of more than 10,000 people by the end of the year.