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Ministry: Ukraine returns two children forcibly sent to Russia

by The Kyiv Independent news desk February 5, 2023 6:39 PM 1 min read
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Ukraine returned two children illegally taken to Russia, the Reintegration Ministry reported on Feb. 5.

According to the ministry, the 13-year-old and 15-year-old girls, together with their mother, were forcibly deported from the eastern Luhansk Oblast to Russia’s Ryazan region. In Russia, the mother died, and the children ended up in an orphanage.

Their older sister, who managed to evacuate with her family to Volyn Oblast, is now the legal guardian over the children.

“Significant victory for our country: Ukrainian children should be in Ukraine,” the ministry said in a statement. “The girls have been reunited with their family and are completely safe."

Thousands of children from Ukraine’s Russia-occupied territories are thought to have been subjected to forced deportation to Russia.

On Jan. 18, Daria Herasymchuk, Ukraine’s presidential advisor for children’s rights and rehabilitation, reported that Russia had abducted almost 14,000 Ukrainian children. Only 125 of them have been returned to Ukraine.

On Feb. 2, the National Resistance Center reported that Russia abducted 50 high school students from occupied Lysychansk in Luhansk Oblast to Tatarstan in Russia.

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