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Families of Ukrainian PoWs hold rallies in Kyiv and Zaporizhzhia – photo

Sunday, 17 December 2023, 16:31
Families of Ukrainian PoWs hold rallies in Kyiv and Zaporizhzhia – photo
Demonstrations in Kyiv and Zaporizhzhia. All photos: Ukrinform

Around 200 relatives of Ukrainian soldiers who had defended Mariupol and are now held in Russian captivity have gathered for a demonstration in Zaporizhzhia to draw public attention to the issue of prisoner exchanges in the hope of speeding up the return of Ukrainian prisoners of war (PoWs) to Ukraine.

Source: Ukrinform news agency 

Details: The organisers said that the last prisoner exchange between Russia and Ukraine was held in June.


They added that over 2,000 Ukrainian soldiers are currently held in Russian captivity.

Demonstrators held placards with slogans and names of their relatives, or their photos. Kids joined their families to attend the demonstrations.

Posters read, from left to right: "Captivity: 1 day = 1 year", "Some people are waiting for the holidays, I’m waiting for my dad to return from captivity", "Don’t forget Azovstal heroes" and "My father, my hero, is still in captivity!"
All photos: Ukrinform

Ukrinform said that some women whose partners serve in the military gave birth after their partners were imprisoned, and their kids have not had a chance to meet their fathers.

Demonstrators created an installation in front of the Zaporizhzhia Oblast State Administration building: a Christmas tree fashioned out of barbed wire, as a reminder that some Ukrainian soldiers are about to meet another Christmas in captivity.


Background: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said that sometimes prisoner-of-war exchanges with Russia take place on the battlefield.

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