Mariupol steel mill battle rages as Ukraine repels attacks
LVIV, Ukraine (AP) — Heavy fighting is raging at the besieged steel plant in Mariupol as Russian forces attempt to finish off the city’s last-ditch defenders and complete the capture of the strategically vital port.
Thursday’s bloody battle came amid growing suspicions that President Vladimir Putin wants to present the Russian people with a major battlefield success in time for Victory Day on Monday.
That is the biggest patriotic holiday on the Russian calendar, marking the Soviet Union’s triumph over Nazi Germany.
Ukraine’s military claimed Thursday it recaptured some areas in the south and repelled other Russian attacks in the east.