The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) reported on Dec. 8 that it had met with the prisoners of war held in the custody of both countries to inspect their living conditions and provide them with books, personal hygiene items, blankets, and warm clothing. “We are able to check how prisoners of war are being treated and to make sure families receive updates,” said ICRC President Mirjana Spoljaric.
The ICRC has conducted two visits to Ukrainian and Russian detainees in the last two weeks and is planning more by the end of the month, according to the report.The Committee added that all POWs have the right to regular meetings with ICRC delegates under the Third Geneva Convention.
“While the recent visits are important to progress, the ICRC must be granted unimpeded access to see all prisoners of war repeatedly and in private, wherever they are held,” reads the report.
In a statement on Oct. 14, the ICRC said it had been barred access from thousands of captives in Ukraine since the start of Russia’s full-scale war.
The day before, Andriy Yermak, the head of the President’s Office, said that Ukraine demanded for the ICRC to send a mission to the prison in occupied Olenivka, Donetsk Oblast, where Ukrainian POWs had been killed by an explosion on July 29.