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Ukraine-Russia war updates: Refugees from Mariupol give harrowing accounts of city under relentless Russian assault

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Escape from Mariupol

Reporting by Barbara Miller in Lviv

Refugees from the besieged city of Mariupol in Ukraine’s south are trickling into Lviv in the west of the country with harrowing accounts of the situation they left behind.

Katya Valenkova sobs as she recounts spending seven days in her basement, hiding from the bombs and the fighting that is getting closer and closer to the city centre.

She was without power for about 10 days, unable to even heat up soup for her toddler.

Worse still was what she saw when she did emerge.

“Horrible things,” she said, shaking her head and wiping away tears.

“Next to our house, there was a ditch where they were throwing the bodies of people who’d been killed.”

Katya managed to get out with her daughter and her grandmother, the little girl’s great grandmother, hitching a ride in someone’s car.

Katya, her daughter and her grandmother. (ABC: Fletcher Yeung)

The trio finally reached Zaporizhzhia, where they boarded a train for…

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