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Ukraine returns 100 POWs from Russian captivity

by The Kyiv Independent news desk February 8, 2024 8:37 PM 2 min read
A group photo of Ukrainians freed from Russian captivity on Feb. 8, 2024. (President Volodymyr Zelensky)
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One hundred Ukrainian prisoners of war have been returned home from Russian captivity, President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Feb. 8.

"National guards, border guards, Armed Forces. The majority (of those freed) are defenders of Mariupol," Zelensky said.

According to Russia's Defense Ministry, Moscow also received 100 soldiers back.

"During the return of Russian military personnel from captivity, the United Arab Emirates provided humanitarian mediation," Russia's ministry said in a statement.

Ukrainian officials said in December that Russia held at least 3,500 Ukrainian POWs, although the number was thought to be higher.

Since then, three prisoner swaps have taken place, with the latest one announced today.

The previous prisoner swap between Ukraine and Russia took place on Jan. 31, when 207 Ukrainian POWs returned home from Russian captivity. Earlier in January, 230 Ukrainian prisoners of war (POWs) were brought back home in the largest prisoner exchange to date since February 2022.

Zelensky: 207 Ukrainian prisoners return home from Russian captivity, almost half of them Mariupol defenders
It was one of the largest groups of Ukrainian prisoners to be brought back from Russian captivity since the beginning of the full-scale war.
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