ICRC, Kyiv, 16.04.2020. – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has participated today in an operation of simultaneous transfer and release of detainees with the main aim to confirm through a neutral actor that the detainees were willing to be transferred, and that the operation takes place in line with international humanitarian standards.

This has been the fourth release and transfer operation since the beginning of the conflict that the ICRC has participated to in its role of neutral intermediary. Today, another 38 people have been released, and 34 of them transferred, some of them after six years of detention. Their willingness to whether they wanted to go for transfer has been respected.

These operations of release and transfer of detainees have a hefty humanitarian value. They bring people back to their families on both sides of the contact line. It shows that even in the conflict, against the hardest and the most challenging of times, humanity can prevail. And it is this very notion of humanity in time of conflict that the ICRC has been promoting around the world for 157 years.

In time of novel Coronavirus threat, consequent preventive measures had to be taken. Still, the operation was completed smoothly, and the detainees will be soon on their way home, after all necessary precautions related to COVID19 outbreak have been taken. They will be able to see their families in the near future, which is all the more important during this pandemic.

The ICRC will continue to follow up on the released detainees, as well as on those still detained in relation with the conflict.

For further information, please contact:

Sanela Bajrambašić, Head of Communication, ICRC Ukraine, tel: + 095 262 80 49

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