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 Political prisoners Afanasiev and Soloshenko to be returned to Ukraine today, ZN's sources from Presidential Administration say

Two Ukrainians Hennadii Afanasiev and Yurii Soloshenko, illegally kept in jails by Russia, are expected to be returned home Tuesday, June 14.

As reported by Censor.NET, this was announced by a source in Presidential Administration to ZN.UA online news website.

According to the source, there is no information regarding who will be given in return to the Russian side. It will be known later in the morning.

It is reported that one of the subjects of the swap is some Odesa female resident. She might be one of the individuals accused of the events of May 2, 2014 in Odesa.

The swap is planned for Tuesday afternoon, but it could be postponed, the source said. The same scheme that was used to release Nadiia Savchenko in exchange for Russian GRU officers might be used, when the Ukrainian and the Russians were delivered to their homelands by planes simultaneously.

Read more: Russia's Supreme Court refuses to reconsider case of Ukrainian film director Sentsov

As reported, since the beginning of the Russian aggression against Ukraine, the Kremlin has captured several Ukrainian citizens hostages. Exact number of Ukrainian prisoners of the Kremlin is not known. At the moment, officials say, about 20 Ukrainians are kept political prisoners in Russian jails or pre-trial facilities, including in the territory of occupied Crimea. The story of Ukrainian pilot Nadiia Savchenko, who had been kidnapped, tried, sentenced, and released, is the most well-known case.

Hennadii Afanasiev and Yurii Soloshenko are among Ukrainian political prisoners still held by the Kremlin. Afanasiev was sentenced in Russia on politically motivated 'case of Sentsov-Kolchenko' to seven years in colony. The case is a criminal proceeding against Ukrainian director Oleh Sentsov, sentenced to 20 years in colony for an alleged organization of a terrorist group in occupied Crimea. Afanasiev testified against other defendants, but later withdrew his testimony and announced tortures during interrogations.

Yurii Soloshenko has been sentenced in Russia to six years in colony for espionage. When in prison, he was diagnosed with cancer.

See more: Savchenko discussed liberation of prisoners with UN Assistant Secretary-General Šimonović. PHOTO

After Nadiia Savchenko was released from captivity, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced of agreements to return Afanasiev and Soloshenko to Ukraine. He then said it could happen in June. It became known later that political prisoners Afanasiev and Soloshenko filed petitions for mercy to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

SBU Head Vasyl Hrytsak announced that the Security Service of Ukraine was preparing for the swap.



 
 
 
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