Moscow's leaders don't care about the soldiers' concerns, according to the persistent accusation. After a trip to the front, Russian Defense Minister Shoigu traveled to the completely destroyed port city of Mariupol. There he inspected water pipes and an infirmary.
According to official information, Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has visited the Ukrainian port of Mariupol, which was destroyed when it was captured by Moscow troops in spring 2022. Shoigu checked the work of the construction brigades in Mariupol during his inspection tour of the Donbass, the Defense Ministry said on its Telegram channel. He is on his way to inspect the "restoration of the infrastructure of the Donbass".
On the video recordings, the 67-year-old can be seen in a newly built hospital and in front of the civil defense building. The ministry also announced that he had received reports on the laying of a water pipeline from the Rostov region in southern Russia to the Donetsk region. Before his tenure as defense minister in 2012, Shoigu headed Russia's civil defense for 18 years.
It is Shoigu's second visit within a few days to the Ukrainian region of Donetsk, which was partially annexed by Russian troops, after he is said to have visited the front there at the weekend. The pictures are supposed to demonstrate the activity and care of the Russian leadership. Criticism has increased recently that those responsible in Moscow are only waging the war from their cabinets and are not paying attention to the concerns of the soldiers and the local population, which Russia, according to its own understanding, had liberated.
In mid-April 2022, Moscow announced the capture of the port city of Mariupol, which had been bombed and besieged continuously since the beginning of the war. It was an important strategic move because it allowed Russia to link the pro-Russian rebel-held areas of Donbass with the occupied Crimea peninsula to the south. Some 2,000 Ukrainian militants holed up at the sprawling Azovstal Steelworks in Mariupol for nearly a month before the government ordered them to surrender to the Russians to save their lives in May. According to Kiev, 90 percent of the city was destroyed and at least 20,000 people were killed.