Largest Prisoner Swap Since War's Inception

Written by Jeppe W

Jan.05 - 2024 9:51 AM CET

Over 200 Soldiers Exchanged Between Russia and Ukraine

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In what is being hailed as the largest prisoner swap since the start of the ongoing conflict, Ukraine and Russia exchanged over 200 captive soldiers each on Wednesday.

The exchange, which was successfully mediated by the United Arab Emirates, marks a significant development, given the previous five months without any such deals.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed the swap on Telegram, sharing a video of the uniformed men rejoicing upon their return. He acknowledged the protracted pause in exchanges, attributing it to ongoing negotiations rather than a complete halt.

The Russian Defense Ministry, in a statement, announced the return of 248 Russian servicemen, emphasizing the provision of necessary medical and psychological assistance to the returning soldiers.

The United Arab Emirates played a crucial role in facilitating this exchange, underlining its strong and amicable relations with both warring nations. This prisoner swap represents a rare instance of agreement and cooperation between Ukraine and Russia amid the conflict that began with Moscow's invasion in February 2022.

Despite the swap, neither side has revealed the total number of prisoners held, maintaining a level of confidentiality typical in such sensitive military exchanges.