Putin visited the occupied city of Mariupol, according to the Kremlin
Sylvie Claire / March 20, 2023
President Vladimir Putin visited the occupied port city of Mariupol, according to the Kremlin. This is the first time since Russia invaded Ukraine in February that the leader has traveled to an occupied territory in the neighboring country.
Mr. Putin flew by helicopter for a "working visit" to Mariupol, a port city on the Sea of Azov in the disputed Donetsk region. The city was the scene of bloody fighting during the invasion. As part of his trip, the Russian president spoke with residents, according to the Kremlin. He drove through the streets of the city, stopping at various locations. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin also briefed the president on the situation in the city and the status of reconstruction work.
The Russian leader's move comes just days after the International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for him.
The Kremlin also reports that Vladimir Putin visited Rostov on the Don, right on the Russian border. He visited a command center of Russian combat forces in Ukraine and met with military leaders. He had already been there on December 17
On Saturday, the Russian president had already visited Crimea, a region of Ukraine annexed to Russia since 2014.