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Vereshchuk informed about the possible exchange of navy men from Zmiyiniy Island

Wednesday, 23 March 2022, 20:39
Vereshchuk informed about the possible exchange of navy men from Zmiyiniy Island

Alyona Mazurenko - Wednesday, March 23, 2022, 21:39

Minister for the Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Iryna Vereshchuk hopes that Ukraine will soon exchange captured Russian sailors for Ukrainian soldiers from Zmiyiniy Island.

Source: Iryna Vereshchuk, Deputy Prime Minister/Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine, interview with Suspilne

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Quote: "These navy personnel, we have rescued 11 navy personnel, and are prepared to exchange them; we don’t need them, we just want our people back…

They [Russia] are prepared to take back their sailors, who, by the way, were rescued when they were drowning in the Black Sea. And I hope that we will release them [Ukrainian POWs] back soon. However, the thing is, it’s not only navy personnel, but 92 people, who, if I'm not mistaken, were captured by them."

Details: According to Iryna Vereshchuk, she was approached by the Russian ombudswoman Tatiana Moskalkova regarding the possibility of parity exchange: navy man for navy man, driver for driver, etc.

Quote: "I say – well ok, but tell me, please, who should we exchange our mayors, who were captured by the aggressors, for? Do we also need to capture your civilians? What should we do if you talk about parity exchange? There is an order of exchange for Prisoners of war, there are cards submitted by the Russian Federation, and which we submit too."

Background:

On 24 February, two unrecognised targets approached Zmiyiniy Island. Russian forces, using the international communication channel for navigation safety, demanded that the Izmail Border Troops surrender under threat.The occupiers fired on Zmiyiniy Island from the ship, then by military aircraft.

The State Border Guard Service reported that communication with border guards on Zmiyiniy Island was lost, and the island was possibly seized by the aggressor in the late evening on 24 February.

The border guards and the Armed Forces of Ukraine received a glimmer of hope that all the defenders of Zmiyiniy Island were alive. Russian media reported that 82 defenders of Snake Island were taken to the berth of the seized Sevastopol Seaport.

Border patrol is doing everything they can to guarantee the release of the defenders of the Zmiyiniy Island.

The response of the defenders of Zmiyiniy Island to Russian forces – "Russian warship, go f* yourself!" – has become a catchphrase around the world. Ukrposhta committed to dedicating this very phrase to a postage stamp.

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