"I couldn't talk, my tears were choking me!" Mariupol pastor spent 300 days in captivity, but returned to his sons

A 64-year-old pastor from Mariupol spent 300 days in Russian captivity

Anatoliy Voloshin, a 64-year-old pastor from Mariupol, spent almost 300 days in captivity. The Ukrainian managed to return home during a prisoner exchange on March 7.

The pastor's story was told in the Telegram channel MRPL NEWS. It noted that the man joined the terrorist defense at the beginning of the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation, was later wounded and lived in the bunkers of Azovstal, after which he and other defenders were taken prisoner. He was held in two colonies - Yelenovka in the Donetsk region and Dovzhansk in the Luhansk region.

He said that before the exchange, the Russians asked him if he wanted to stay, but the clergyman answered that he wanted to return to Ukraine, to his sons.

"On Ukraine," the Russians corrected him," Voloshin added.

On March 7, 72 people came out of the Dovzhan colony during the prisoner exchange. Their hands were tied, hats were put over their eyes and duct tape was wrapped around them. They drove with their heads bowed down. It was forbidden to speak.

"I could not speak, tears were choking me. There were no tears, though. We were given phones and warm suits," the man recalled, adding that above all he wanted to know what was happening in Ukraine.

Voloshin currently lives in Kyiv. And in his surviving house in Mariupol there are people who have lost their homes.

Recall, earlier Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky reported that 2,235 Ukrainians and Ukrainian women (data as of April 18, 2023) managed to return to their native land from Russian captivity during the full-scale war. The Ukrainian state is doing everything it can to free all of our citizens held by Russia.

The president showed a moving video linking moments captured on camera during the prisoner exchanges and expressed gratitude to the team working to bring Ukrainians home.

As reported by OBOZREVATEL:

- Dmytro Lubinets, the Verkhovna Rada Commissioner for Human Rights, said that 86% of Ukrainian soldiers who returned from Russian captivity were subjected to physical torture. The United Nations international human rights mission also has similar data;

- on April 10, as part of a large-scale prisoner exchange, Azovstal defender Valeria "Nava" Karpilenko was freed from Russian captivity. A Mariupol poetess, she joined the Azov regiment to be with her beloved, border guard Andrei Subbotin.

Only verified information on our Telegram channel Obozrevatel and Viber. Do not be fooled by fakes!

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