French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have welcomed Ukraine and pro-Russia separatists’ prisoners’ swap, calling on both parts to release the remaining captives and press for full implementation of peace deal. In a joint statement released by French presidency on Wednesday, the two leaders called the exchange of prisoners “an important result,” that “should contribute to building trust between the sides, with a view to the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements”, Xinhua reported.
Macron and Merkel also urged Kiev and pro-Russia rebels to exchange all the remaining detainees, ensure full access of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to all prisoners and facilitate search for missing persons. Earlier on Wednesday, Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists exchanged hundreds of prisoners as part of Franco-German backed peace deal signed in February 2015.
The agreement included a complete cessation of fighting, a pullback of heavy weapons from front lines and release of prisoners of war.