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Kiev and Donetsk will exchange prisoners on "3 for 6" basis today — DPR ombudsperson

February 20, 13:53 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The last prisoner exchange between DPR and Ukraine on a "2 for 2" basis took place on November 15
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A captive Ukrainian Army soldier seen during an exchange of war prisoners

A captive Ukrainian Army soldier seen during an exchange of war prisoners

© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, February 20. /TASS/. The prisoner exchange between Donetsk and Kiev on "3 for 6" basis will take place today on the highway linking the settlements of Maryinka and Alexandrovka, the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) human rights ombudsperson Daria Morozova said on Saturday.

"Five DPR militiamen and priest Father Nikon will be exchanged. It is not yet clear what condition Father Nikon is in," Donetsk News Agency quoted Morozova as saying.

According to preliminary reports, the prisoner exchange will take place at 1pm Moscow time. Kiev also expressed hope that the prisoner swap will take place today.

"I think you will make you happy today but we will not announce the occasion yet," advisor to the head of Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) Yury Tandit told 112 Ukraina TV channel adding that SBU is not yet sure that the prisoner exchange will be held.

The last prisoner exchange between DPR and Ukraine on a "2 for 2" basis took place on November 15.

Prisoner exchange is envisaged by the Minsk accords signed on 12 February 2015, after negotiations in the so-called "Normandy format" in the Belarusian capital Minsk, bringing together Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.

The Minsk accords also accords envisage ceasefire, weaponry withdrawal, local election in Donbass, constitutional reform in Ukraine and establishing working sub-groups on security, political, economy and humanitarian components of the Minsk accords.

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