(CNN) – Families of militants hiding in the Azovstal factory in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol have passionately appealed to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to remain a “hero” and begin the process of expelling all remaining militants. Factory.
At a news conference in Kiev, the father of the 18-year-old militant, Evny Zuharnikov, urged the Turkish president to “seize the historic opportunity to go down in history as a pacifist and a hero.”
“I appeal to you, man to man, father to father, to save my son and his comrades,” Suharnikov said, referring to Turkey’s experience of military expulsion in the Middle East.
Yvonne Zuharnikov called for the deployment of a civilian ship to collect fighters from Azovstal and suggested that they be transferred from the war to a neutral country, and provided examples of evacuations in Syria and France during World War II in Dinkirk.
“We need a hero, someone with enough political power to do this. From a political and geographical point of view, we believe that Turkey and Erdogan can be that person,” he said.
Families of the militants collected 1.5 million signatures.
“The United Nations and the Red Cross are only interested in civilians,” said one militant’s wife, standing next to her young son. “If they are abandoned, Ukraine will not have a bright future,” one militant militant warned.
Ukraine has offered to release Russian prisoners of war in exchange for evacuating wounded Ukrainian soldiers from a besieged Azovstel steel plant.
According to the Russian and Ukrainian armies, several hundred soldiers are believed to be staying at Mariupol’s last fortress as Russia continues its routine bombardment of the plant.
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