MOSCOW, October 26. /TASS/. Vladimir Rogov, chairman of the We Are Together with Russia civil society group, on Wednesday said Ukrainian servicemen in the Kiev-controlled city of Zaporozhye put up civilians next to their bases or at local factories so they could be taken hostage, if there’s a need to do so, just like they did at Azovstal in Mariupol.
"They certainly could take people hostage," he said when asked if the Mariupol scenario could be repeated in Zaporozhye. "They put them up nearby, using a layered cake tactic, meaning some rooms accommodate militants and equipment and others nearby accommodate regular people."
According to the activist, the entire industrial area of the city is being turned into bases of the Ukrainian military and foreign mercenaries. Rogov said Ukrainian forces settle next to them the people who "left the liberated territories, refusing to recognize the liberation and the results of the referendum."
"There’s just one purpose for this: In the event of a strike, they can always say that shelling affected civilians. Of course, people won’t be told how civilians ended up next to militants, especially at a plant," Rogov said.
Earlier, he told TASS that almost all large enterprises in the Ukraine-controlled part of the Zaporozhye Region were turned into strongholds of the armed forces. The enterprises are Zaporozhstal, Zaporozhkoks and the local aluminum smelter.
Yevgeny Balitsky, the region’s acting governor, said on Wednesday that the city of Zaporozhye and its industrial enterprises are turning into a stronghold just like Mariupol and Azovstal. He said there are thousands of mercenaries in Zaporozhye based mostly at the Avtozaz plant.