Oleksandr Svidlo, the acting mayor of the city of Berdyansk on Ukraine’s southern coast, has said Russian troops have entered the city and taken control of the city.
Berdyansk, which has a small naval base, has about 100,000 inhabitants.
Svidlo posted a message to the residents of the city on his Facebook page on Sunday that read: “A few hours ago, you and I witnessed how heavy military equipment and armed soldiers entered the city and began to advance through our hometown. I heard that “I have tried to inform all residents of the city so that you have the opportunity to shelter in shelters.”
Svidlo continued: “Some time ago, armed soldiers entered the executive committee building and introduced themselves as soldiers of the Russian army. They told us that all the administrative buildings were under their control and they were taking over the executive committee building.”
Svidlo said officials were asked to continue working, “but under the control of gunmen. I consider this proposal unacceptable, so we, as all members of Operational Headquarters, have left the Executive Committee building.”
Svidlo ended his post with the words: “Today Berdyansk was in the line of fire. I don’t know what tomorrow will be like, but I think tonight will be very, very difficult.”