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Tearful reunions as Russia and Ukraine exchange hundreds of prisoners

via WION
This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

Russia and Ukraine conducted a significant prisoner exchange, mediated by the United Arab Emirates.

The swap, the largest in nearly five months, saw 230 Ukrainians and 248 Russian servicemen returning home.

Emotional scenes were captured as Ukrainian soldiers embraced their fellow POWs, while Russian prisoners arrived in Belgorod. (Trending: Trump Announces Heartbreaking Melania-Related Health Update)

“We are home! You didn’t forget us!” cheered one Ukrainian.

“I’ll be home in five hours, roughly speaking, that’s going to be a joy,” said an unnamed Russian.

The UAE’s Foreign Ministry credited the “strong friendly relations between the UAE and both the Russian Federation and the Republic of Ukraine, which were supported by sustained calls at the highest levels.”

Ukrainian President Zelenskyy expressed gratitude for the return of soldiers, emphasizing the ongoing negotiations and the importance of maintaining hope.

“Initially, there was no information about some of them being held captive,” said Zelenskyy.

“They were considered missing in action. It is critical to keep hope alive. Prisoner swaps have been on hold for a long time, but negotiations have not ceased for a single moment. We are seizing every opportunity, attempting every mediation format, and raising the issue at any international meeting that may be helpful,” he continued.

“The more Russians we capture, the more effective the negotiations regarding swaps will be,” added Zelenskyy.

The exchange followed Russia’s launch of hypersonic ballistic missiles at Ukrainian cities, resulting in casualties.

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