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After almost 50 exchanges: DIU on the number of Ukrainians released from Russian captivity

Yusov commented on the pause in prisoner exchanges
Yusov commented on the pause in prisoner exchanges

Since the beginning of the large-scale war, Ukraine and Russia have conducted nearly 50 prisoner exchanges. More than 2,500 citizens held by the Russian invaders have returned home.

Since the end of summer, Russia has effectively frozen the process of exchanging prisoners of war. However, the negotiations are continuing, said Andrii Yusov, a representative of the Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Directorate, on the air of Yedyni Novyny.

He emphasized that the Ukrainian side is making every effort to return the defenders captured by the enemy.

"More than 2.5 thousand Ukrainians have been returned from Russian captivity and almost 50 exchanges have taken place, and the work on this is ongoing," the DIU official emphasized. He noted that human life is much more valuable for Ukraine than for Russia.

Yusov's appearance on the air.

"We state the fact that despite the recent public statements by [Sergei] Shoigu and other officials of the aggressor state that it is important for them to return the prisoners, they are not making any real efforts to do so. Nevertheless, the negotiations have not stopped all this time and are ongoing, and we are counting on the result, preparing for it in accordance with international law and actively replenishing the exchange fund," Yusov said.

The DIU did not disclose data on how many Ukrainians may be in Russian captivity. However, Yusov pointed out that Ukraine continues to work on registers.

"Independently of public information, the register of the National Information Bureau is working, which collects data on both prisoners of war and civilian prisoners held by the Russians," the military intelligence representative reminded.

As OBOZ.UA wrote:

- The Ministry of Reintegration previously stated that more than 2,300 Ukrainians are still in Russian captivity.

- As of November, more than 250 occupants voluntarily surrendered to Ukrainian captivity through the "I Want to Live" project.

- The head of the press service of the Coordination Headquarters for the Treatment of Prisoners of War, Petro Yatsenko, noted that the aggressor country has now effectively frozen exchanges. The last one took place in August 2023. 22 servicemen returned to the territory controlled by Ukraine at that time.

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