First Deputy Chairwoman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Iryna Gerashchenko, who represents Ukraine in the humanitarian subgroup of the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG), has said that there is no progress in the release of captives and the search for persons missing in Donbas.
“There is no progress in the release of hostages and the search for missing people, which is of great concern, especially amid the latest disturbing news about the deterioration of the health of our political prisoners and hostages, a hunger striker declared by Oleh Sentsov, amid a prolonged hunger strike by Volodymyr Balukh,” she wrote on her Facebook page on May 16 after a meeting of the TCG’s humanitarian subgroup in Minsk.
Gerashchenko said that the issue of the transfer of 23 Russian citizens in exchange for Ukrainian political prisoners and hostages had been raised at the meeting.
“There is still no response from the Russians on the 23 Russian citizens convicted of crimes against the Ukrainian state, whom we are ready to hand over to the Russian Federation for the release of our political prisoners and hostages,” she said.
According to Gerashchenko, the issue of hostages requires the pressure from the whole world on Russia.