18 January 2018, 21:13
Donbass, Ukraine exchange prisoner lists, DPR and LPR waiting for Kiev’s answer - Kobtseva
Representatives of Donbass and Ukraine exchanged prisoner lists at the meeting in Minsk on Thursday; the Donbass Republics are awaiting Kiev’s answer, head of LPR working group on prisoner exchange Olga Kobtseva told Lugansk Media Centre.
“Today, during the meeting of the working group on humanitarian issues we only exchanged the lists and are awaiting Ukraine’s answer,” Kobtseva said.
Commenting on Ukraine’s statement that the prisoner exchange might take place in the near future, she noted that Kiev was “jumping the gun.”
On 27 December, LPR, DPR and Ukraine carried out the biggest prisoner exchange in the past 14 months near Mayorsk crossing point on the contact line in DPR responsibility zone. LPR passed 16 detainees to Ukraine, and Kiev passed 73 people to LPR.
In a telephone conversation with LPR and DPR leaders Igor Plotnitskiy and Alexander Zakharchenko on 15 November, Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed Ukrainian special representative for humanitarian issues Viktor Medvedchuk’s initiative to carry out the 306 for 74 prisoner swap in the near future. The Donbass Republics heads assured the Russian leader that they were ready for the prisoner exchange.
Prisoner exchange is a key point of the Minsk Agreements.
The Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements was adopted by the Contact Group on Ukraine on 12 February 2015 and supported by member states of the Normandy Four (Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France). The UN Security Council approved the document by its 2202 Resolution and called upon all the sides to ensure full implementation of the Package of Measures.
The document provides for comprehensive ceasefire, withdrawal of all heavy weapons from the contact line, starting a dialog on reconstruction of social and economic ties between Kiev and Donbass. It also envisages carrying out constitutional reform in Ukraine providing for decentralization and adopting permanent legislation on a special status of certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.
To facilitate the work of the Contact Group, four working groups were set up under its aegis to deal with issues of security, politics, return of internally displaced people and refuges, as well as with social, humanitarian, economic and rehabilitation issues.
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