Ukraine, Russia Complete Fifth Prisoner Swap This Year Via UAE

(Bloomberg) -- Ukraine and Russia completed a large prisoner swap Tuesday, a rare deal between the nations at war since 2022 that was brokered by the United Arab Emirates.

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Ninety Ukrainian soldiers, captured during Russia’s invasion, have been returned home, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Telegram. Russia’s Defense Ministry revealed the same number of Russians released by Kyiv.

The swap is the fifth such deal this year. It represents a rare official contact between Ukraine and Russia since the nations failed attempt to conclude a peace accord in March 2022, shortly after Russia’s full-scale invasion.

The war, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths, millions displaced, and severe economic devastation, is now in its third year with no end in sight. Following Kyiv’s failure to reclaim ground during last year’s counteroffensive, Russia’s troops have resumed their advance, slowly pressing forward in the north and in the east.

The nations have so far ruled out any compromises for a peace accord, insisting on ending the war on their own terms. Earlier this month, 83 nations, mostly from the West, reaffirmed their support for Kyiv’s peace plan during a summit in Switzerland. However, Ukraine was unable to gain the support of nations from the Global South, including China, India, Brazil and South Africa.

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