President's Office sees no link between Steinmeier formula implementation, captives swap
Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Bohdan has said he believes that Kyiv stood no loss as a result of exchanging captives with Moscow on September 7.
"Again, we can talk endlessly about that. But there is a result, and this result is supported by the vast majority of citizens of Ukraine. What did we lose? I think that at this point there is no link between the Steinmeier formula, its implementation, and the exchange of captives. It was a reciprocal step to meet each other halfway. I don't know whether the second step will be taken. I hope it will," Bohdan said in an interview with the online newspaper Ukrainska Pravda, published on Tuesday morning.
Ukraine did not lose anything, and those steps only highlighted the rationality of the Ukrainian authorities, he said.
"And it was highly important to show our soldiers that they won't be abandoned in captivity there but, if something happens, the state will fight to the end to release them," Bohdan said.
Implementing the Steinmeier formula is a path toward peace, he said.
"The Steinmeier formula is a path toward peace. We are demonstrating it publicly: both to Ukraine and the rest of the world. And Russia, in turn, needs to respond somehow, because even society within Russia does not appreciate this 'I don't hear anything, I don't see anything' position. And, on the whole, it is necessary to understand that our active efforts, our peace-loving stance are intended not only for the international audience but also for citizens of Russia," Bohdan said.