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MOSCOW, March 5. /TASS/. The Kremlin will draft a response to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s request to release Ukrainian pilot Nadezhda Savchenko, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Thursday.
"We have received [Poroshenko’s] letter, a response will be drafted," Peskov said.
The topic was not discussed at today’s talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, he added.
Earlier on Thursday, Poroshenko said he had sent a letter to Putin with a request to release Savchenko, who was charged with complicity in the death of two Russian journalists near Lugansk in eastern Ukraine and with illegal border crossing. Poroshenko also asked Renzi to raise the issue at his talks with Putin in Moscow.
Savchenko on Thursday agreed to have some chicken soup while being on a hunger strike that has lasted for more than 80 days.
Russian investigators say that Nadezhda Savchenko, a gunner of a Mi-24 helicopter, joined the notorious Aidar battalion during combat operations in the much-troubled Luhansk region of east Ukraine last June.
Upon finding out the position of a filming crew of the Russian State Broadcasting Company and other civilians, she allegedly reported the data to mortar men who then delivered fire at the crew and the civilians. As a result, correspondent Igor Kornelyuk and sound engineer Anton Voloshin were killed.
As she was elected a deputy of Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament), she filed resignation from the Ukrainian Armed Forces.