Russia had requested a Security Council meeting. On Wednesday, a Russian military transport plane crashed, killing all 74 people on board, according to Russia. It was said that among them were 65 Ukrainian prisoners of war.
Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Dmitry Polyansky, said: “All the information available to us shows that we are dealing with a well-planned and thought-out crime.” According to Moscow, Kiev shot down the plane before the planned prisoner exchange.
“The Ukrainian army command knew the route well and how the soldiers would be transported to the exchange site,” Polyansky said. According to him, Ukraine is sacrificing its forces for the sake of “Western geopolitical interests.”
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Ukraine: “A deliberate action by Russia”
Ukraine, in turn, strongly rejected these accusations. Kiev also denies that it received advance information about the incident. A Russian lawmaker claimed, on Thursday, that Ukrainian military intelligence received a warning before the plane entered the area where it was shot down.
Kiev said the incident was “a deliberate act by Russia to endanger the lives and safety of prisoners.” Ukraine’s ambassador to the United Nations said that the Russian prisoners who were exchanged were transferred to the agreed upon location. “The Russian side had to guarantee the same level of security enjoyed by captured Ukrainian soldiers.”
Zelensky said earlier that he wanted an international investigation into the incident because the incident did not occur on Ukrainian territory. He also questions whether Russian research into the incident is reliable.
There is a lot that is unclear about exactly what happened
Much remains unclear about what exactly happened on Wednesday. The only thing that is certain is that the plane crashed in Russia’s Belgorod region.
Ukraine confirmed that a prisoner exchange was scheduled on the day of the incident, but it ultimately did not happen.
Russia also reported that missile remnants were found near the crash site. But the Ukrainian intelligence service confirms that Russian air defenses were also active in that area.
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