14 Feb 2018 17:38

DPR, LPR asking for 18 Russians in prisoner swap - Medvedchuk

KYIV. Feb 14 (Interfax) - Representatives from the breakaway parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions have included 18 Russians on their list for a prisoner exchange, according to Viktor Medvedchuk, Ukraine's special representative to the humanitarian subgroup of the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) and leader of the All-Ukrainian Social Movement Ukrainian Choice.

"With regard to the Russians, my answer to you is that today, Donetsk and Luhansk representatives again put all Russian citizens (the 18 people I mentioned earlier) on their swap lists," Medvedchuk said in an interview with the newspaper Novaya Gazeta published on Wednesday.

The problems with releasing prisoner are Ukraine's, he said. "I hope that Ukraine will make the release of our citizens its cornerstone instead of talking about whom we can or cannot release here," Medvedchuk said.

Talks over exchanging the Ukrainians jailed in Russia continue, he said.

"I can reassure you that that these talks have never stopped, with regard to [Oleh] Sentsov as well as [Oleksandr] Kolchenko, [Mykola] Karpiuk, and [Stanislav] Klykh. As for [Roman] Sushchenko, preliminary talks are under way, he has not been convicted yet. Talks are taking place constantly. There are various proposals which I cannot yet discuss in public, naturally," Medvedchuk said.