Ilya Novikov gave an interview to Russian TV channel Dozhd' (Rain), where he spoke about the details of his most recent meeting with President Petro Poroshenko and Savchenko’s family, as well as the latest news from Savchenko’s defense team.
According to him, the Ukrainian fighter pilot could be exchanged on Russian servicemen Yevgeniy Yerofeev and Alexandr Alexandrov, but that couldn’t happen until at least May 18. As is known, Yerofeev and Alexandrov were wounded and captured during a firefight with Ukrainian troopers near Schastya town, Luhansk region, in May 2015. They were brought to Kyiv and charged with illegal crossing of the Ukrainian border and membership in illegal armed units of the so-called Luhansk People’s Republic. Both confirmed they served with Russia’s Main Department of Intelligence, the GRU. Both Ukrainian and Russian governments are considering the option of their exchange on Savchenko.
Speaking about his meeting with Poroshenko and Nadiya Savchenko’s family, Novikov said that the President explained his plan, which basically foresees that Savchenko will be exchanged on Yerofeev and Alexandrov. “However, the exchange cannot take place until May 18; that marks 30 days since the verdict in their case was announced. That is, one can expect the exchange on that day or right after that, as soon as the necessary documents are signed”, the lawyer stressed, specifying that Poroshenko outtalked Savchenko to cease starving until May 18.