Desperate Ukrainians have scrawled the word "CHILDREN" in Russian on the ground outside a bombed theatre where survivors are still buried alive.
The city of Mariupol in the south of Ukraine has suffered some of the worst damage as a result of the Russian invasion, with the city's once-elegant theatre not escaping the destruction.
Prior to its levelling, satellite images showed that desperate locals had scrawled the word "CHILDREN" on the ground outside the theatre – which sheltered 1,000 Ukrainians – in order to avoid any bombardment from the Russian air force.
Despite their best efforts however, Russian forces bombed the building and footage shows survivors who were buried alive emerging from the rubble.
Mayoral adviser Petro Andrushchenko told Reuters that "the bomb shelter held" despite the building appearing to have been razed to the ground.
“Now the rubble is being cleared. There are survivors,” he said, adding they do not yet know how many.
Ukrainian parliament member Sergiy Taruta also noted in a Facebook post that people were coming out alive, writing: “Finally good news from Mariupol!”
The city council wrote on Telegram: “It is still impossible to estimate the scale of this horrific and inhumane act, because the Russians continues to shell residential areas.
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“It is impossible to find words that could describe the level of cruelty… It is obvious that the only goal of the Russian army is the genocide of the Ukrainian people."
In his latest video address, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that “Russian aircraft purposefully dropped a huge bomb” on the theatre.
He added: “Citizens of Russia! How is your blockade of Mariupol different from the blockade of Leningrad during World War II?"
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