Over 1 million people evacuated from Ukraine into Russia - Lavrov


On April 30, Reuters - More than 1 million people have been evacuated from Ukraine into Russia since February 24 Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in remarks published early on Saturday.

Its 1.02 million includes 120,000 foreigners and people evacuated from Russian-backed breakaway regions of Ukraine, the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People's republics, which Russia recognised as independent just before it launched its invasion.

Since the start of the invasion, more than 5.4 million people have fled Ukraine, according to data from the United Nations. Moscow calls it a special operation to demilitarise and denazify its neighbour. Ukraine and the West say Russia has launched an unprovoked war of aggression.

Lavrov, in comments to China's official Xinhua news agency, said 2.8 million people in Ukraine have asked to be evacuated into Russia.

Ukraine has said that thousands of people have been forced to be deported to Russia by Russia.

Efforts to evacuate civilians from some front-line areas, including the besieged southern port of Mariupol, have been broken down repeatedly, with each side blaming the other.

Lavrov said that if the United States and NATO are serious about resolving the Ukrainian crisis, they should stop sending weapons to Kyiv.

By publicly expressing support for the Kyiv regime, the NATO countries are doing everything possible to prevent the end of the operation through political agreements, Lavrov said.