A radio intercept has revealed that Kiev ordered Azov* fighters to kill both the military of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) and foreign mercenaries who decided to surrender to Russian forces in Mariupol.
According to official representative of the Ministry of Defense, Major General Igor Konashenkov, Russia offered the Ukrainian military men, who were surrounded and completely blocked on the territory of the Azovstal metallurgical plant in Mariupol, to voluntarily lay down their arms and surrender.
"According to the Ukrainian servicemen that have already surrendered, there are up to 400 foreign mercenaries on the territory of Azovstal as part of the Ukrainian group,” Konashenkov said. Most of the foreign mercenaries came from European countries and Canada.
Radio conversations on the territory of Mariupol are conducted in six foreign languages, Konashenkov said. All foreign mercenaries would be destroyed if they continue showing resistance, the official added.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky earlier said that Kiev would stop negotiating with Moscow should Russia destroy the Ukrainian military in Mariupol. Such actions "will put an end to all negotiations," he said.
The Russian Ministry of Defense has published the list with the names of Ukrainian military men, who were killed in the course of the Russian-led military operation, a message posted on the official Telegram channel of the military department said on Monday, April 18.
The list contains soldiers' dates of birth, military specialties and positions, numbers of military units, as well as circumstances of death. The list is divided into two large groups, in which there are three and four parts respectively.
The message from the Russian Ministry of Defense said that the military department has reliable information about the real losses of the Ukrainian army, the national guard and foreign mercenaries who arrived. To date, the Ukraine's documented losses amount to as many as 23,367 people, Konashenkov said.
"Documents at the disposal of the Russian Ministry of Defense also show that a large number of Ukrainian servicemen deserted, were wounded and went missing,” he added.
*extremist group, banned in Russia
The Russian Armed Forces returned to strategic positions of the first "Surovikin line” east of Robotyne in the Zaporizhzhia direction of hostilities