Donetsk, Jan 19 – DAN. Ukrainian representatives at the Minsk talks tried to use their obligations to drop charges against former detainees for promoting their own interests in discussing new prisoner swaps, Donetsk People’s Republic ombudswoman, the Republic’s representative in the humanitarian subgroup Darya Morozova said on Tuesday.
Ukraine has not provided any information on the dropping of charges against 50 persons who earlier were handed over to the DPR during prisoner swaps. A year has passed since Kiev had to stop criminal prosecution of the above citizens. Ukraine has not fulfilled its obligation up to date and avoids answering any questions regarding this procedure. Furthermore, Kiev representatives on Tuesday tried to blackmail the Republic with this issue suggesting that they drop charges in exchange for agreeing a new prisoner swap, Morozova said following the first session of the humanitarian subgroup this year.
Kiev’s meeting this commitment is envisioned by earlier accords and is the condition for further prisoner exchange talks between the DPR and Ukraine, she said.
“The fault for the lack of progress today solely rests with Kiev which cynically manipulates people’s fates in pursuit of political advantage. That Ukraine is not interested in new exchanges is shown by the fact that it does not respond to the DPR’s numerous enquiries regarding the status of the citizens the Republic is looking for. This information is crucial for drawing new lists for prisoner exchanges,” the ombudswoman said.
At the Tuesday meeting of the humanitarian subgroup, Ukraine continued to pursue a destructive line, while its delegation members showed their incompetence in discussed matters, Morozova said.
The previous prisoner exchange in Donbass took place in April 2020. Donetsk handed over nine people to Kiev and the latter passed ten people to Donetsk. Over the past two years, 50 people were passed to the Republic, but Kiev has not fulfilled its obligation to drop charges against them and stop their criminal prosecution.*jk