Ukraine, Russia carry out largest prisoner exchange since war began

Ukraine and Russia carried out their largest prisoner exchange since the beginning of the ongoing war on February 24, the Main Intelligence Directorate of Kiev’s Defence Ministry said in a statement.

The agency said 144 Ukrainians aged 19 and 65 years returned home as a result of the exchange on Wednesday, reports Xinhua news agency.

According to the statement, under the swap, Russia released 59 soldiers of the National Guard of Ukraine, including 43 from the Azov regiment which fought for Mariupol’s Azovstal steel plant.

Most of the released Ukrainians have severe injuries, it said.

Ukraine and Russia conducted their first prisoner exchange on March 24.

The agency noted that most of the released Ukrainians have serious injuries: gunshot and shrapnel wounds, explosives-related injuries, burns, fractures, and amputated limbs.

All of them are receiving proper emergency medical and psychological care, it added.

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