MOSCOW, March 2. /TASS/. The Kremlin is glad that Russia and Ukraine exchanged detained border guards, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Friday.
"The Kremlin is satisfied that it was possible to complete the exchange of two Russian border guards - Vladimir Kuznetsov and Askar Kulub - for two Ukrainian border guards - Bogdan Martson and Igor Dzyubak," Peskov said. "We are glad that our Russian border guards returned home," he added.
The Kremlin spokesman highlighted the role of the leader of the Ukrainian Choice - People’s Right social movement and the special representative for humanitarian issues in the contact group on peaceful settlement of the situation in Donbass, Viktor Medvedchuk.
"On February 22, Viktor Medvedchuk, who is handling humanitarian and detainee exchange issues, was in Moscow and had contacts in Kiev. As a result, chiefly due to his efforts and, naturally, based on the political will demonstrated by both sides, the border guards’ exchange became possible," Peskov said.
The Russian intelligence services earlier reported that two service members, Askar Kulub and Vladimir Kuznetsov, had lost their bearings during a training exercise near Armyansk, Crimea, overnight into June 30, 2017, and were detained by Ukraine’s border guards. They were taken into custody under the court’s decision.
Two border violators, service members of the Sumy Border Guard Detachment of the Ukrainian State Border Guard Igor Dzyubak and Bogdan Martson, were detained in the Bryansk Region on October 3, 2017. They were charged with the illegal border crossing. The violators faced up to six years in jail.