Topline

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Veheshchuk said Saturday all women, children and the elderly have been evacuated from the besieged Azovstal steel works in Mariupol following an international effort to allow civilians to flee the sprawling complex where they had been trapped for weeks in the southern Ukrainian city .

Key Facts

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Veheshchuk said in a Telegram post “the president’s order has been carried out,” and that this portion of the Mariupol humanitarian operation had been completed.

Mariupol Patrol Police Chief Mykhailo Vershynin told CNN the evacuation had been conducted without incident, but he did not specify how many people were able to leave.

The Azovstal Iron and Steel Works complex is the last Ukrainian stronghold in Mariupol, and Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops to block the site so that “not even a fly” could escape.

Ukrainian officials have been working to evacuate hundreds of civilians from the plant for over a week, as international groups—including the UN and the Vatican—have called for a ceasefire around the plant to allow people to flee.