Another 12 Ukrainians – 10 military and two civilians – have returned home from Russian captivity. Among them are five seriously wounded, the Coordination Headquarters for the Treatment of Prisoners of War has said on Telegram.
"Ten defenders are soldiers and non-commissioned officers. They were captured, in particular, in the battles near Bakhmut, the villages of Opytne and Orikhovo-Vasylivka in Donetsk Region, near Kreminna and Chervonopopivka in Luhansk Region. We also returned two civilians who were held hostage by the aggressor: from the village of Liptsi, Kharkiv Region, and Mariupol," it specified.
The freed soldiers belong to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, in particular, the 518th Separate Special Forces Battalion, the 25th Separate Airborne Sicheslav Brigade, the 95th Separate Air Assault Brigade, the 93rd Separate Mechanised Brigade Kholodnyy Yar, the 56th Separate Motorised Infantry Brigade of Mariupol, and the 57th Separate Infantry Battalion.
"On 24 March, Ukraine voluntarily and unconditionally returned to Russia all seriously wounded prisoners who were transportable. This is in line with the requirements of international humanitarian law. Instead, the aggressor state decided to release only five seriously wounded Ukrainians, and not all of them, as required by the international conventions signed by Russia. This clearly demonstrates the enemy's unwillingness to comply with the Geneva Conventions, unjustified cruelty towards the severely wounded and a blatant lack of interest in establishing further exchanges for particularly vulnerable categories of prisoners and civilian hostages," the Coordination Headquarters emphasises.
Since the beginning of the large-scale invasion, 2,005 Ukrainians have been released from captivity.