The Ukrainian media outlet Suspilne analyzed a list that Russian propagandist Margarita Simonyan shared with the names of the Ukrainian POWs allegedly killed in a plane crash on Jan. 24, confirming that the list of names are in fact Ukrainian soldiers currently held by Russia.
Suspilne could not confirm, however, that those on the list were actually on the plane when it crashed, nor that they were potentially part of a prisoner exchange.
Simonyan published a list of Ukrainian prisoners of war (POWs) allegedly killed in the Russian Il-76 transport plane that crashed in Belgorod Oblast on Jan. 24. Ukrainian authorities have not verified the news.
The Russian state news agency RIA Novosti confirmed the plane crash earlier, citing the country's Defense Ministry.
The Russian Defense Ministry claimed that 65 captured military Ukrainian personnel were aboard the plane on its way for a prisoner exchange, as well as six crew members and three accompanying people.
The Kyiv Independent could not verify these claims. The Ukrainian military did not immediately respond to the Kyiv Independent's request for comment.
Ukraine's Coordination Headquarters for the Treatment of Prisoners of War said it is investigating the information about prisoners of war but urged the public to trust only statements by authorized persons.
Ukraine's military intelligence (HUR) spokesperson Andrii Yusov said in a comment for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) that a prisoner exchange was indeed planned for Jan. 24 but did not happen.
Russia's claim that there were Ukrainian prisoners on board is being verified, Yusov told the outlet.