Ukraine is demanding that Russia return more than 4,000 orphans who were illegally transferred to Russia, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Iryna Vereshchuk has said during a visit to Zaporizhzhya, Radio Liberty reports.
"Russia is deliberately blurring the focus of the media, the focus of society by calling all children evacuated, saying that they have done us a great favour by taking our children, that it is a humanitarian mission, that they are being treated well and saved. This is not true. This is a crime, this is deportation, this is an act of genocide against Ukrainian children. And we record this every time. We have addressed Russia with a written list of orphans whom we demand to be returned. In fact, there are 4,396 names of our children," said Vereshchuk.
She also noted that Ukraine is ready to cooperate with all international organisations on the return of Ukrainian children taken to Russia.
"We are ready to pick up our children in any EU country where they will hand them over to us on the border with Russia through the mediation of either UNICEF or the International Committee of the Red Cross, through the mediation of other international organisations that are ready to go and pick up our children. We insist that all children be returned because all children have a legal representative. The state, which is the legal representative of such children, is ready to take responsibility for their lives and their comfortable stay," added Vereshchuk.