‘I buried dad in a missile crater’: Life and death under the siege of Mariupol


The once thriving southern port city became the scene of nightmares when it was attacked (Picture: Getty)

The missile that landed outside 74-year-old Hryhory’s Mariupol home left a crater measuring 10 feet across and six feet deep.

When he died weeks later through lack of access to medical help, his son Maksym Kasianczuk lowered his body into it and buried him there.

Maksym fears he will never return to his home city, the place he was raised by his father and where he buried him with his bare hands.

The LGBTQ+ activist was caring for frail and blind Hryhory when Russian forces surged into Ukraine on February 24.

The southern port city was immediately in the Kremlin’s crosshairs and a brutal siege began which would last for almost three months.

Maksym saw 53 days of its terror, misery and starvation. He was reduced to melting snow for drinking water when the supply was cut off.

The story of his father’s burial, living in fear of his political activity being uncovered and his narrow escape is one of countless nightmares to have been played out in Mariupol.

He told Metro.co.uk: ‘There was no water, there was no food. We were just waiting for death to come from the never ending missiles.’

The crater in which Maksym buried his father, who died because he was cut off from the medical treatment he needed

Mariupol, he says, is ‘ruined’. The remains of the city are now under the control of Russia’s occupation force and cholera has begun to spread.

Recounting the brutal military assault, Maksym said: ‘In the first days of the invasion, Russian military vehicles started to come down the wide roads.

‘Every 50 metres they would stop and bomb anything, business or homes, and keep going until there …read more

Source:: Metro News

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