Following continued attacks on residential blocks, hospitals, journalists, and evacuees, patients and staff at the largest hospital in the city of Mariupol in Southern Ukraine have been taken hostage by Russian forces, according to Mariupol Deputy Mayor Sergei Orlov.

“The biggest hospital in the 17th district of our cities is captured by Russian troops, and the Russian army used doctors and patients as hostages in this building. We do not have any access to them,” said the mayor.

According to Orlov, Russian forces had captured the Mariupol Regional Intensive Care Hospital and were allegedly using patients and doctors like hostages. 500 Ukrainians in total are said to be held captive in the hospital, including 400 civilians from neighboring houses also being held within the building.

“We can confirm this information, and also the governor of Donetsk region has confirmed this confirmation. We received information that there are 400 people there,” Orlov said. A report by the Associated Press puts the number of hostages at 500.

The human rights organization Media Initiative for Human Rights in Ukraine also verified the information. They have received reports from their hotline stating that Russian troops had occupied the Mariupol Regional Intensive Care Hospital.

Regional Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko received information that these civilians from neighboring houses were ‘forcibly’ moved to the hospital and that they could not leave. More so, cars are not able to drive to the hospital as high-rise buildings are burning within the area.

British journalist Andrew Marr during his show on LBC accused the Russians of using SS tactics as he received reports of hostage-taking in Mariupol, where Russians were allegedly shooting those who were trying to escape.

“Today’s menu contains the report that Russia is holding hostage the patients and medical staff of Mariupol hospital and shooting those trying to escape. If that’s true, and the fog of war hangs over Ukraine, I think we could fairly call it SS tactics,” said Marr.