Media: Russia admits possibility of Sentsov exchange

Alexei Kondratyev, Deputy Chairman of Russia’s Federation Council Defense and Security Committee, stated on July 2 that the Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov could be included in the list for a prisoner exchange between Russia and Ukraine.

As reported by the Russian Izvestia newspaper, Kondratyev said: “I think Sentsov can get [on the list]. The issue of his exchange has repeatedly been raised by the Ukrainian side, and his name is still relevant [for exchange].”

On July 2, the First Deputy Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada,Iryna Herashchenko, named 23 Russian citizens sentenced or arrested in Ukraine, whom Ukraine was ready to hand over in exchange for Ukrainian prisoners being held in Russia and the Crimea.

Imprisoned in Russia, Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov declared an indefinite hunger strike on May 14, demanding the release of all Ukrainian political prisoners held in Russian penitentiaries. On May 31, he stated that he was “not interested in being swapped,” as he is “a person who does or dies.”

Activists in Ukraine and around the world continue to demand Russian President Vladimir Putin to release   Ukrainians political prisoners. The protests are held in various countries and continents, gaining momentum on social media under the trending slogans #FreeOlegSentsov and #SaveOlegSentsov.

  Russia, Ukraine, Oleh Sentsov