Civilians evacuated from Ukraine's Mariupol

STORY: Around 50 Ukrainian civilians reached the relative safety of a temporary camp in Russian-held territory on Sunday after being evacuated from a ruined steelworks in Mariupol, where the United Nations said a "safe passage operation" was in progress.

A convoy of vehicles with Ukrainian number plates, Russian forces and vehicles with United Nations symbols arrived in the village of Bezimenne, located in the Donetsk region, around 20 miles from Mariupol.

The city is under Russian control but some fighters and civilians remain holed up in the Azovstal works - a vast Soviet-era plant designed with a labyrinth of bunkers and tunnels to withstand attack.

It is one of the first major signs of an evacuation agreement to ease the ordeal of the most destructive siege in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Russia's defense ministry said on Sunday that 46 civilians had left the area around the steel plant the previous day.

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi pledged continued support for Ukraine when she met President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in an unannounced visit to Kyiv.

"We believe that we are visiting you to say thank you for your fight for freedom that we are on a frontier of freedom and then your fight is a fight for everyone. So, our commitment is to be there for you until the fight is done."

Russia's defence ministry said on Sunday it had carried out a missile strike on a military airfield near the port city of Odesa, destroying a stock of Western-supplied weapons.

It released video showing a missile being launched, which it said was used to carry out the strikes.

On Saturday, Ukraine said Russian missiles had knocked out a newly constructed runway at Odesa's main airport. President Zelenskiy pledged in an overnight address to rebuild it.

It was unclear if they were referring to the same incident and Reuters could not immediately verify the reports.

Moscow has turned its focus to Ukraine's south and east after failing to capture Kyiv in the early weeks of the war.

In the northern city of Irpin - one of the main fighting hotspots before Russian troops pulled back - people gathered to honor their military dead, laying flowers on freshly dug graves.

Ten year old Saveliy Krotkikh’s father Ivan was killed by shelling.

His mother Alla said she was thankful to her husband who she said died defending their city.

Her 21-year old son and her husband's brother, who were also in the army, were both wounded trying to help rescue her husband.

Tetyana Blyznyuk’s husband also died fighting.

She said he always used to bring her flowers. But today, it was her turn to bring them to him.

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