Ukraine’s president delivered his usual late-night address earlier, and spoke about a range of topics including the situation in Mariupol.
Taking the port city in the south is key to Moscow’s war aims – it is strategically positioned and so Russia’s military has been bombarding it for months, reports the BBC.
The city’s final defenders have been holed up in the Azovstal steelworks, and Zelensky said a “large number” of wounded needed to be evacuated.
“Very complex negotiations are under way on the next phase of the evacuation mission – the removal of the badly wounded [and] medics,” he said.
“We are doing everything to evacuate all the others, every one of our defenders,” Zelensky said.
He added that Kyiv was using “influential intermediaries” in the negotiations, but did not give further details.
Meanwhile, Zelensky referred to the blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports, something experts say could trigger a global food crisis.
That’s because – prior to the invasion – Ukraine exported a large amount of agricultural products around the world.
Zelensky repeated his accusation that the blockade was part of a deliberate strategy by Moscow to cause chaos.
He said Russian officials were “openly threatening the world that there will be famine in dozens of countries”.
Directly addressing Western leaders, he asked: “What political instability and migration flows will this lead to? How much will you have to spend then to overcome the consequences?”