NewsRussia Offers to Return Bodies of POWs from IL-76 Crash to Ukraine

Russia Offers to Return Bodies of POWs from IL‑76 Crash to Ukraine

The Il-76 disaster returns. Ukraine confirms negotiations with Russia
The Il-76 disaster returns. Ukraine confirms negotiations with Russia
Images source: © Getty Images | Anadolu
7:17 AM EST, March 1, 2024

Tatiana Moskalkowa, during a discussion with the Russian propaganda agency RIA Novosti, confirmed Russia's readiness to hand over the bodies from the IL-76 crash that occurred in the Belgorod region. "From a procedural standpoint, everything necessary is in place. (...) The bodies can be transported following existing procedures," she stated.

Ukrainian intelligence has also acknowledged the ongoing negotiations. "Ukraine has made several appeals to the aggressor state concerning the bodies of Ukrainian prisoners of war believed to have died in the IL-76 plane crash in the Belgorod region. We are continuously working on this matter," Andrij Jusow, a Ukrainian Ministry of Defense’s Main Intelligence Directorate representative, told the Ukrainian news agency, Ukrinform.

On January 24th, a Russian military plane, the IL-76, crashed in the Belgorod region, which borders Ukraine. Russian officials alleged that the plane said to be carrying Ukrainian prisoners of war for an exchange, was downed by Ukrainian forces.

Kyiv refutes these allegations, highlighting that the IL-76 is traditionally used for transporting weapons and soldiers. They also pointed out that Russia failed to provide a list of the deceased, casting doubt on the claim that prisoners were being transported by air.

Moreover, Ukraine is advocating for an international commission to probe into the crash, a proposal to which Moscow has yet to respond.

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