kyiv and Moscow exchange a large number of prisoners | War in Ukraine
Sviatoslav Palamar, a member of the Azov regiment who was liberated in the prisoner exchanges with Moscow, speaks on the phone in Ankara, the capital of Turkey.
Ten prisoners of war, including five Britons and two Americans, were transferred from Russia to Saudi Arabia in an exchange between Moscow and Ukraine facilitated by Saudi mediation.
This transfer of prisoners was announced by the Saudi Foreign Ministry on Wednesday.
They are five Britons, two Americans, a Moroccan, a Swede and a Croat, the ministry said in a statement.
They arrived in Saudi Arabia from Russia and the Saudi authorities are working to facilitate procedures for their safe return to their respective countries, according to the same source.
This exchange was facilitated by the efforts of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto leaderof Saudi Arabia, which continues to undertake humanitarian initiatives in the context of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis, added the same source.
This one does& #x27;did not specify the identity of the ex-prisoners, nor the date of their arrival, nor the date of their return to their countries.
On the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York, British Prime Minister Liz Truss welcomed the extremely welcome announcement of the release of five Britons held prisoner by Russia, whose troops have invaded Ukraine last February.
Extremely welcome news: five British nationals held by pro-Russians in eastern Ukraine have been safely repatriated, she said tweeted, thanking both Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Saudi Arabia.
For his part, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said the United States thanks Mr. Zelensky and his government for including two US citizens in the prisoner exchange announced today. with Russia.
We thank Crown Prince [Mohammed bin Salman, Ed] and the Saudi government for facilitating this operation, he also wrote on Twitter .
Among the Britons freed is Ailen Aslin, who was sentenced to death in June for mercenary charges by separatist authorities in Donetsk, a region in eastern Ukraine held by pro-Russian rebels.
I am delighted that my constituent, Aiden Aslin, and other British POWs held by the Russian authorities have finally been released and are on track to return to the UK, the MP tweeted British Robert Jenrick.
The Moroccan was identified as Brahim Saadoun by an official at the Moroccan embassy in Riyadh, who requested anonymity. This Moroccan, who had fought in the Ukrainian army, had been sentenced to death for mercenary action in Donetsk.
Sweden and Croatia have also confirmed the release of their citizens and thanked Ukraine and Saudi Arabia. The Croatian, Vjekoslav Prebeg, detained in Ukraine since April, will return to his country on Thursday, according to the Croatian Foreign Ministry.
In addition, Ukraine and Russia carried out an exchange of military prisoners, the largest since the start of the offensive at the end of February.
We have succeeded in freeing 215 people, the head of the Ukrainian presidential administration Andriy Yermak said on Wednesday evening.
In particular, kyiv has recovered defense chiefs from the Azovstal steelworks in the city of Mariupol, a symbol of resistance to the Russian invasion. Five military commanders, including Azovstal defense chiefs, have been transferred to Turkey, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stressed.
They will remain in this country in absolute safety and under comfortable conditions until the end of the war under the terms of an agreement with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to the Ukrainian head of state.
Russia has recovered 55 prisoners, including ex-MP Viktor Medvedchuk, a close associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin, accused of high treason in Ukraine, Zelensky said in his daily message.
The war between Ukraine and Russia has fueled tensions between Saudi Arabia and the United States, allies for decades.
Saudi Arabia has voted in favor of a first UN resolution to denounce the Russian invasion and to demand the withdrawal of troops from Moscow.
However, the Saudi oil kingdom resisted pressure from the United States to increase crude production to alleviate the energy crisis resulting from the war, pressure marked by a visit from the US President Joe Biden in July in Saudi Arabia.
On the other hand, he coordinated with the OPEC+ cartel which he leads jointly with Russia. However, faced with fears of recession, the OPEC+ countries decided to cut their production in early September to support prices.
On Tuesday, the Saudi Crown Prince met a emissary of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
He affirmed to his interlocutor the kingdom's support for international efforts aimed at resolving the crisis and its willingness to continue efforts to reduce the humanitarian fallout, according to Saudi media.
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