Ukrainian Defence Minister Stepan Poltorak welcomed the exchange of hostages that took place on Wednesday between the Ukrainian side and the militants supported by Russia, and expressed the hope that all the hostages will return home in the coming year. "The Ukrainian soldiers who returned to their homeland after spending a long time in captivity are back home. aThe country welcomes its sons, who have suffered hard trials. I sincerely hope that in 2018 all the hostages will be released and will return to their relatives and comrades," Poltorak wrote on Facebook on Wednesday night.
The minister assured that Ukraine remembers about each of them and believes in a speedy release. Poltorak wished all relatives and friends of Ukrainian prisoners life's steadfastness, hope and faith in victory.
According to the prosecutor's office, the final figures of Wendsday's exchange under the formula "74 at 306" – 73 at 233.
President Petro Poroshenko instructed the government to provide material assistance to the liberated and their families to facilitate their adaptation.