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Ukraine's Defence Intelligence shares details of 53rd POW exchange with Russians – videos

Saturday, 29 June 2024, 13:29
Ukraine's Defence Intelligence shares details of 53rd POW exchange with Russians – videos

The Ukrainian side states that 90 soldiers and 10 civilian Ukrainians were brought back during the 53rd exchange of prisoners of war. The fact that civilian Ukrainians are being held in Russian captivity demonstrates the murderous nature of Russia's war against Ukraine.

Source: Andrii Yusov, spokesman for Ukraine’s Defence Intelligence, on the air of the national joint 24/7 newscast 

Quote: "This night marked the end of the 53rd exchange since the beginning of Russia's full-scale aggression. As part of the exchange, 100 Ukrainians were brought back, both military and civilians (90 soldiers and 10 civilians). Since the start of the full-scale war, 3,310 Ukrainians have been released from Russian captivity under the auspices of the Coordination Headquarters for the Treatment of Prisoners of War. Both military (mostly) and civilians.


The fact that we are discussing the release of civilian prisoners from Russian captivity today serves as clear proof to the rest of the world that Russia's assault on Ukrainians is genocidal, that the enemy commits war crimes, and that international humanitarian law is ignored. These people should not be held captive, and their rights should not be constrained. These people’s ‘crime’ is that they refused to surrender to the Russian occupation. Heleta and Levytskyi and two Greek Catholic Church priests, were imprisoned and subjected to extraordinarily severe conditions, including being arrested during prayer, for praying, and for representing the Ukrainian church.

Mr Nariman – for not abandoning his Crimean Tatar and Ukrainian identities... Other examples include Olena Pekh, a teacher, and this can be applied to anyone."


Details: Yusov further stated that hundreds of Ukrainian citizens are being held captive, which is a blatant, large-scale crime committed by Putin's Russia .

In terms of the conditions of detention of civilian Ukrainians in comparison to military prisoners, a representative of Ukraine's Defence Intelligence stated that everything depends on the situation, but in many cases, civilian Ukrainians are kept in places not intended for this, even outside of Russian "legal conditions".

Some of the hostages were also brought back from the territory of the Russian Federation's ally, Belarus, but the representative of Ukraine's Defence Intelligence did not go into detail about how this was accomplished, only stating that it was the product of  complex, meticulous and comprehensive efforts.

He emphasised that Ukraine will fight for all of its citizens, no matter where they are.

Yusov noted that the 53rd exchange was completed through the mediation of the United Arab Emirates and the Holy See in the Vatican.

Background: Ukrainian authorities managed to bring back 10 civilians from Russian captivity on 28 June. Among them is Nariman Dzhelyal, Deputy Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, who was captured in Crimea in 2021, as well as priests of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, captured in Berdiansk for their resistance to the Russians [Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People is the single highest executive-representative body of the Crimean Tatars in the period between sessions of the Qurultay of the Crimean Tatar People – ed.].

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