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Port City Of Mariupol Plays Key Role In Ukraine Crisis

Ukrainian servicemen ride atop armored vehicles with Ukrainian flags, on the outskirts of Donetsk, Ukraine, Wednesday, March 4, 2015. (Evgeniy Maloletka/AP)
Ukrainian servicemen ride atop armored vehicles with Ukrainian flags, on the outskirts of Donetsk, Ukraine, Wednesday, March 4, 2015. (Evgeniy Maloletka/AP)

As the UN Security Council holds an emergency session on Ukraine today, a ceasefire is still holding around the port city of Mariupol. But the Ukrainian government is accusing separatist rebels and their Russian backers of bringing more heavy weapons across the border in preparation for an attack on the city.

If there is an attack in the coming days or weeks, it’s not clear how the population of the city will react. Roughly half are thought to be sympathetic to the rebels. A key will be how the workers at the giant Ilyich Iron & Steel Works respond. The BBC’s Rupert Wingfield Hayes has been inside to find out.


Note: This BBC interview can be heard in the Here & Now podcast or with the WBUR app.

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