Why in News: It has become the most heavily bombed and damaged city in Ukraine’s war with Russia
- It is a city in Ukraine, on the north coast of the Sea of Azov at the mouth of the Kalmius river, in the Pryazovia region.
- While internationally recognized as in Ukraine, the city is under the de facto administration of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Taking the port city would be a strategic win for Russia – and a major blow for Ukraine:
- If Mariupol was seized, Russia would also end up with full control of more than 80% of Ukraine’s Black Sea coastline – cutting off its maritime trade and further isolating it from the world.
- Mariupol is a key export hub for Ukraine’s steel, coal, and corn going to customers in the Middle East and beyond.