Friday, September 9 2016 17:30 EEST
Next prisoner exchange between Ukraine and illegal armed units will take place in the near future, - Kuchma
Ukraine, politics, war, Donbas, prisoners, exchange, DPR, LPR, army, military, Kuchma, negotiations, talks, Minks agreements, final stage

Kuchma said Negotiations on prisoner exchange between Kyiv, Donbas in final stage

The next prisoner exchange between Ukraine and illegal armed units will take place in the very near future, Leonid Kuchma, second president of Ukraine (1994-2005) and Ukraine's representative in the Trilateral Contact Group on the settlement of the situation in Donbas, said, Interfax-Ukraine reports.

Negotiations on this matter are now in the final stage, he said. 'I have hope that the next prisoner exchange will take place in the very near future. These negotiations are virtually in the final stage. Let's wait,' Kuchma said during a meeting with students of the Chernihiv National Technical University.

The issue of prisoner exchange is 'truly sensitive,' he said. 'Some regions of Donbas use for political purposes as a method to put pressure on Ukraine. And one of the main conditions, including amnesty. They are saying that Ukraine should pass a law under which we should amnesty everyone who engaged in it. But we know, and, factoring in world experience, that people who have blood on their hands are not amnestied. And then, there is a legal system: every person should go to trial, starting from the law enforcement agencies, and a court has to say if this person should be amnestied or not. They are speculating on that,' the politician said.

He said militants understand well that 'responsibility will have to be borne' for what has happened in Donbas. 'Although I understand that an overwhelming majority of people are not to blame for what happened, but it is also being used for prisoner exchange - it is so,' Kuchma said.

As reported earlier by, 6 soldiers of the Ukrainian National Guard are still in militant captivity, while 24 are missing.

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