- Title: 'We did what we said' - Ukraine's Zelenskiy on prisoner swap
- Date: 29th December 2019
- Summary: KIEV, UKRAINE (DECEMBER 29, 2019) (REUTERS) ***WARNING: CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** CROWD OUTSIDE PLANE VARIOUS OF RELATIVES GREETING RELEASED PRISONERS WOMAN HUGGING RELEASED PRISONER WOMAN WRAPPED IN UKRAINIAN FLAG WALKING
- Embargoed: 12th January 2020 23:25
- Keywords: Ukraine airport arrival conflict east exchange president Volodymyr Zelenskiy prisoners pro-Russian separatists rebels swap
- Location: KIEV, UKRAINE
- City: KIEV, UKRAINE
- Country: Ukraine
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA004BC13OLJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and relatives greeted freed Ukrainian prisoners at Kiev's Boryspil Airport on Sunday night (December 29), following their release by pro-Russian separatists.
Earlier on Sunday, Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian separatists conducted an all-for-all prisoner swap at a check point near the industrial town of Horlivka in the Donetsk region.
"The main thing is that the people are at home before the New Year ... I am happy, I think they are too," Zelenskiy said.
He thanked fellow leaders of the so-called "Normandy Four" group - Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany - for helping mediate the swap during talks in Paris earlier this month.
Some Ukrainians remained in custody both in Russia and Donbass and may figure in future swaps, Zelenskiy said.
Kiev's forces have been battling separatists in the Donbass region since 2014 in a conflict that has claimed more than 13,000 lives. Sporadic fighting continues despite a ceasefire agreement.
Relations between Ukraine and Russia collapsed following Moscow's annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014, and its subsequent support for separatists in eastern Ukraine. Moscow denies allegations.
(Production: Sergei Karazy, Margaryta Chornokondratenko, Peter Scott)
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