Kiev (AFP) – Russia and Ukraine made a long-awaited swap of 70 prisoners on Saturday, a deal hailed as a first step towards ending five years of tensions and conflict.
Two planes carrying 35 prisoners from each side landed simultaneously in Moscow and Kiev, where the passengers emerged under sunny skies.
“We have taken the first step,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on the tarmac after greeting and hugging former detainees. “We have to take all the steps to finish this horrible war.”
In emotional scenes at Kiev’s Boryspil airport, family members embraced and handed flowers to the former prisoners, many weeping with joy.
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