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Russian teachers detained by Ukrainian military in liberated territories. They face up to 12 years in prison

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said that schoolteachers were detained in settlements liberated from the Russian army. They had arrived in the occupied territories to work in local schools according to Russian educational programs. Vereshchuk is quoted by Strana as saying they will be tried under Article 438 of the Ukrainian Criminal Code (violation of laws and customs of war). This article provides for punishment in the form of imprisonment for a term of eight to twelve years.

“They committed a crime against our state. We have repeatedly warned the Russian citizens who agreed to come to Ukraine and conduct activities prohibited by law. Of course, the measure of punishment for them will be determined by the court, but there is still a certain number of Russian citizens in our country who came to the temporarily occupied territories and whl will definitely be punished if they don’t leave our territory without delay”, Vereshchuk said.

She said the Russian teachers will not be considered as prisoners suitable for exchange.

“No one will consider them as prisoners of war because they are not combatants, the Geneva Conventions do not provide for the exchange of persons who are not prisoners of war,” Vereshchuk said.

In July, it was reported that teachers were being recruited in Russian regions, especially in those with low salaries, to teach Ukrainian children “correct” history and, according to Russian Education Minister Sergei Kravtsov, correct geography and social studies. Teachers were offered salaries of approximately 190,000 rubles ($3130).

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