About 7,000 Ukrainians in Russian jails – Ukraine MFA

15:50, 27 May 2016
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About 7,000 Ukrainian citizens remain prisoners in Russian jails, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Vadym Prystaiko told journalists at a Kharkiv briefing after the opening of the Honorary Consulate of Austria, according to an UNIAN correspondent.

Photo from UNIAN

"To understand the scale, you should be aware that nearly 7,000 Ukrainians are now prisoners in Russian jails. These are Ukrainian citizens who are protected by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine," he said.

Prystaiko acknowledged that both criminal and political prisoners were in Russian jails. The representative of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said that Ukraine was in constant negotiations on the release of the latter category.

Read alsoKremlin's prisoners: Media tell of Ukrainians thrown into Russian dungeons"The negotiations are underway. In the case of Savchenko, the presidents were forced to intervene. The level of these negotiations was very high and complicated. Regarding all the people whom we consider political prisoners in Russia, our consuls have been involved [in the talks] from the beginning, from the first day. The number [of political prisoners] is growing, there are more Crimean Tatars," Prystaiko said.

Read alsoSome 3,044 Ukrainians released from captivity since start of Donbas conflictAccording to him, Ukraine knows over a dozen Crimean Tatars as political prisoners. "Figures vary. Today, we know of only about a dozen of Crimean Tatars," the deputy minister said.

Prystaiko also noted that the situation with Ukrainian prisoners in Russia Stanislav Klykh and Mykola Karpiuk who were sentenced on May 26 was similar to the situation with Nadia Savchenko.

Read alsoChechen court ruling: Karpiuk sentenced to 22.5 years, Klykh should serve 20 years"We do not want to interfere with the negotiations, but there is a certain sequence of steps," he said.

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