Russian authorities rebuffed Ukraine's offer to exchange all Muslim prisoners of war from both sides at the beginning of the Ramadan month on March 22, Daria Zarivna, a communication adviser to the head of the President's Office, told Voice of America.
"We came up with a proposal to exchange Muslims 'all for all' from both sides as a sign of respect for their culture and traditions, but the Russian side received this idea without much enthusiasm," Zarivna said.
In the latest prisoner exchange on April 3, Ukraine brought 10 soldiers and two civilians back from Russian captivity, the Coordinating Headquarters for the Treatment of Prisoners of War reported.
Five of the soldiers are seriously injured, according to the coordinating headquarters.
The soldiers were captured during battles in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, including near Bakhmut. One civilian was from the village of Lyptsi in Kharkiv Oblast and the other was from Mariupol.
According to the coordinating headquarters, there are still more than five seriously-wounded soldiers in Russian captivity, and Ukraine had expected them to be released.
The coordinating headquarters has conducted 39 exchanges since the beginning of the invasion. More than 2,000 people have been released from Russian captivity, according to the coordinating headquarters.