According to the Ukraine-Russia prisoner of war exchange agreement, 207 soldiers were released on January 31, the Ukrainian government announced. According to the press release, among those released are most of the troops from Mariupol and Snake Island, who were captured at the beginning of the Russian invasion, as well as the famous Azov troops.
The Russian government press release stated that 195 prisoners of war had been exchanged, so 12 more Ukrainian prisoners of war were released. It is the first prisoner-of-war exchange program since the January 24 shooting down of a Russian military transport plane carrying 65 Ukrainian prisoners of war.
Officials of the Ukrainian army said that they hope that the Ukrainian soldiers who have now been released will get true information about the downed plane. Despite Ukraine’s request for an international investigation into whether there were prisoners of war on the downed plane and the cause of the crash, the Russian government has refused to accept it.
Russian news reports that the relevant authorities have taken the wreckage of the plane back and cleared the crash site. The bodies of 6 Russian flight attendants and 3 soldiers who were on the plane were only shown, and the Russian news reports that they have not been able to show evidence of the more than 60 Ukrainian prisoners of war who were on the plane.