Russia has
established a strategic military corridor connecting Crimea, a region Moscow
had annexed from Ukraine in 2014, and Donbas, another region in the Kremlin’s
sphere of influence
, according to RIA Novosti, a Russian state-run news agency.
The report claims the strategic corridor will connect Crimea and Mariupol,
which is reportedly surrounded by Russian troops and Moscow-backed rebel

The corridor has
been in the making for some time and observers, as well as the US media,
believe this will allow troops based in Crimea to join the separatists in the
Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), a region granted legitimacy prior to Russia’s “invasion”
of Ukraine. For Russia, which has met strong resistance in northern Ukraine,
the south remains critical to its efforts to dominate the former Soviet state.

If Moscow is able
to send troops
to Mariupol, it might be able to seize one of Ukraine’s biggest
ports. Further, the corridor might connect mainland Russia with Crimea and that
with the rebel regions making it much easier for the Kremlin to move people and
supplies within Ukraine’s internationally recognised borders.

Also read | Why controlling Mariupol and Azov Sea is key to Russia’s Ukraine invasion?

Meanwhile in
Mariupol, more than 2,000 civilians have died, official estimates show. Power
and water supply has been cut off in this region reported to be housing nearly
450,000 people. The violence has led to a wave of migration from Mariupol as
well as the rest of Ukraine. Millions of Ukrainian refugees have been forced to
flee, according to a CNN report. The situation has been described as “the
fastest growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.”

While many
Ukrainians have sought to flee country, most have settled in western Ukraine, a
region which has, at least for now, remained shielded from the conflict
engulfing the rest of the region. Most of those fleeing Ukraine are women and
children and Poland, so far, has accepted the largest number of refugees. The
Ukraine government has outlawed men aged 18 to 60 from fleeing the country and
appealed to them to join the war effort.