of the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations
to russian religious figures on the evacuation of civilians
and wounded defenders of Mariupol from Azovstal
Currently, tens of thousands of civilians in Mariupol are on the verge of survival. Many of them have found shelter at the Azovstal plant, where they are hiding from constant shelling and bombing. Among them are children, women, and the elderly, as well as many sick and wounded people who need urgent medical care. They do not have food, water, hygiene products, and necessary medicines due to the lack of a humanitarian corridor and the impossibility of evacuation. Their lives can end at any moment if nobody stand up for them right now!
The Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations calls on every russian religious figure, regardless of confessional affiliation, to make public and non-public requests to the russian authorities to organize the evacuation of civilians and wounded defenders of Mariupol from the Azovstal plant.
Their exit will take place under the control of an international mission throughout the entire process, up to the delivery of people to the territory controlled by Ukraine. At the same time, Ukrainian defenders can be exchanged for captured russian soldiers and other persons detained for anti-Ukrainian activities.
On these holy days for most believers – the celebration of Easter, Passover, and Ramadan – we call on everyone to make every possible effort to save the lives of thousands of civilians in Mariupol who are under blockade and need immediate evacuation!
Kyiv, 22 April 2022