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Ten More Ukrainians Freed from Russian Captivity


Ten Ukrainian citizens have been successfully returned from Russian captivity, as announced by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Those freed include Nariman Dzhelyal, the Deputy Head of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, detained in Crimea in 2021. Olena Pekh and Valeriy Matiushenko, civilians held since 2017–2018, are also among the freed. Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church priests Bohdan Heleta and Ivan Levytsky, captured in Berdyansk, have been released. Additionally, five civilians captured in Belarus—Mykola Shvets, Nataliya Zakharenko, Pavlo Kupriienko, Lyudmyla Honcharenko, and Kateryna Bryukhanova—are now back in Ukraine.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy commented on the release, stating, “We are grateful to everyone who helped bring our people home. This success highlights our unwavering commitment to securing the freedom of every Ukrainian held in captivity.”

The Vatican played a crucial role in facilitating the exchange that led to the return of ten Ukrainian citizens from Russian captivity.

On June 25, 2024, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced the return of 90 Ukrainian defenders from Russian captivity, including soldiers from various military branches. He thanked those involved in the exchange, including the UAE, and reaffirmed Ukraine’s commitment to liberating all captives.

Successfully returned citizens from captivity in Russia.
Successfully returned citizens from captivity in Russia.
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