Abducted Mayor taken to Luhansk: Ukraine military

Military authorities in Ukraine have claimed that Ivan Fedorov, the Mayor of Melitopol who was allegedly abducted by Russian forces on March 11, has been taken to the separatist Luhansk region.

According to the latest update by the military administration of Zaporizhzhya region, where Melitopol is located, said Fedorov is in currently in Luhansk, “where he is incriminated with terrorism”, the Ukrayinska Pravda newspaper reported.

The administration said that a protest rally in Berdyansk on Monday demanding the release of Fedorov was obstructed by Russian forces.

“Armed Russian troops surrounded the square and pushed people away. The occupying forces accompanied their actions with warnings from loudspeakers to ban rallies,” it added.

Participants of the rally chanted slogans in both Ukrainian and Russian like, “Melitopol is Ukraine” and “Go home while you are alive”.

President Volodymyr Zelensky has said that the Melitopol Mayor was tortured so that he could record a video showing his support for the Russian authorities.

Since Russia began its invasion on February 24, there has been several abductions.

On March 10, the Russian forces abducted Leyla Ibragimova, a deputy of the Zaporizhzhya Regional Council, in Melitopol. She was later released, reports the Ukrayinska Pravda.

During a protest in the city on March 12, activist Olga Haisumova was kidnapped amidst the demonstration.

Meanwhile, the fates of abducted Dniprorudne Mayor Yevhen Matveyev and Head of Melitopol District Council Serhiy Priyma remain unknown.

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