Greek Foreign Minister to lead humanitarian aid mission to Mariupol

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Greek Foreign Minister, Nikos Dendias, said on Tuesday that he intends to lead a humanitarian mission into the besieged city of Mariupol in Ukraine where thousands of ethnic Greeks live.

Dendias said that Greece’s priority was to protect unarmed civilians and ethnic Greeks living in Mariupol, adding that he has already notified Ukrainian and Russian authorities over the humanitarian mission.

“I plan to escort this assistance myself, in coordination with the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer, with whom we are already in contact,” Dendias said.

READ MORE: Russian attack destroys maternity hospital in Mariupol as Greece ramps up evacuations.

“Greece will continue to be present in the region, where the Greeks settles centuries ago for centuries.”

Ukraine appealed to Russia on Tuesday to allow humanitarian supplies into Mariupol and to let civilians out of the city, which has been devastated by Russian bombardments.

Ukraine also defied an ultimatum for the city to surrender by dawn on Monday as a condition for Russian forces to let civilians leave safely.

READ MORE: Russian shelling damages Consulate of Greece in Ukrainian city of Mariupol.

Dendias’ announcement came after a meeting with the Greek Consul General in Mariupol, Manolis Androulakis.

Dendias’ announcement came after he was briefed by the Greek Consul General in Mariupol, Manolis Androulakis, about the desperate plight of the tens of thousands of ethnic Greeks in the besieged port city.

Androulakis, who was the last remaining Western diplomat left in the city of Mariupol, arrived in Greece from Bucharest on Sunday evening.

READ MORE: Greek Consul in Mariupol returns to Greece after successful evacuation from Ukraine.

At least 10 ethnic Greeks have been killed and several have been wounded since Russia started attacking Mariupol. According to the Greek government, more than 150 Greek citizens, vessel crews and ethnic Greeks have also been evacuated from the region.

Source: Reuters.

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