Ukrainian border guards returned home after captivity in Russia: Details and background of exchange

Author : News Agency

Source : 112 Ukraine

Employees of the State Border Service Bohdan Martson and Igor Dziubak, kidnapped by the Russian special services in October 2017, returned to Ukraine.
22:47, 5 March 2018

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Ukrainian photo

On the neutral territory, near the Hoptovka checkpoint in the Kharkiv region, Ukraine and Russia exchanged the detained border guards.

As a result, employees of the State Border Service Bohdan Martson and Igor Dziubak, kidnapped by the Russian special services in October 2017, were returned to Ukraine.

"This is a very complicated process, there were a lot of exchange letters, you understand that the aggressor country is not going for a simple exchange, there were complicated negotiations," the head of the State Border Service Petro Tsigikal said at the end of the operation.

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Now more details about what is known about this exchange, and the previous story:

- Ukrainian border guards Igor Dzyubak and Bogdan Martson disappeared in Sumy region on the border with Russia on October 3, 2017.

- The next day Russia confirmed the detention of both Ukrainians.

- The court arrested them for two months under two articles: "Illegal crossing of the border" and "Malicious disobedience to law enforcement officials."

- According to Dzyubak and Martson, they were treated "as criminals".

- Ukrainian border guards were exchanged for servicemen of the border guard service of the Russian Federal Security Vladimir Kuznetsov and Askar Kuluba who were detained in the summer of 2017 in Kherson region.

- According to the detained Russians, they acted as violators on the border while doing exercises and lost their way.

- In late October 2017, the State Border Service spokesman Oleh Slobodyan said that Russians intentionally delayed the return of Ukrainian border guards to exchange them for Kuznetsov and Kuluba.

- Russian border guards in Ukraine were convicted under art. 204-2 of the Code of Ukraine on Administrative Violations ("Violation of the order of entry into the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine and departure from it"), imposing a penalty in the form of administrative arrest for 15 days and obliging to pay a court fee in the amount of UAH 320.

- Later, an investigation was opened against Kuznetsov and Kuluba under part 2 of Article 110 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine).

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