The Russian deputy prime minister outlined a plan to rebuild the port city of Mariupol in southern Ukraine, which was heavily shelled during fighting from February to May.
“The first residential buildings will start construction in September. We will also have the first hospitals and will build a center of the Ministry of Emergencies,” replied Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin. interview today.
Russia also plans to rebuild the historic center of Mariupol, renovating all the buildings that have not been completely destroyed by the shelling.
The move comes as part of broader Russian efforts to gain support in Ukrainian territories now controlled by Moscow.
The coastal city of Azov had a population of about 400,000 before the outbreak of hostilities, forcing many to evacuate. Mr. Khusnullin said Mariupol’s population would grow to 350,000 by 2025, but did not specify how this would be achieved.
The Azovstal Steel Plant, a Soviet-era facility that once employed more than 12,000 people, will not be rebuilt to its former capacity, Khusnullin said. “But we will definitely create jobs there to feed the city. Most likely it will become a tech zone,” he said.
Mariupol was devastated after months of hostilities. The Ukrainian side believes that tens of thousands of people have died in this city due to fighting. Hundreds of Azov battalion soldiers and civilians hid in the basement of the Azovstal factory for weeks before Russia took full control of Mariupol in May.
Huyen Le (Follow AFP)