Russia frees US prisoners of war after Saudi mediation

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Russia frees US prisoners of war after Saudi mediation

Two American vets captured this summer while fighting alongside the Ukrainian military were released on Wednesday — part of a deal brokered by Saudi Arabia to free 10 foreigners held by the Kremlin.

Alexander Drueke, 39, and Andy Huynh, 27, were captured in June during a fierce firefight in Ukraine’s Kharkiv province.

The pair, both from Alabama, was among ten foreign fighters released Wednesday by Russia. The group includes five Britons, one Croatian, one Moroccan and a Swedish national, the Saudi foreign ministry said in a statement.

“The relevant Saudi authorities received and transferred them from Russia to the kingdom and are facilitating procedures for their respective countries,” the ministry said.

British national Aiden Aslin — who was sentenced to death earlier this year by the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic after he was captured defending the ruined port city of Mariupol — was also among those released, according to British lawmaker Robert Jenrick.

POW walk on tarmac
Out of the ten prisoners released, five are British citizens, one Moroccan, one Swede, one Croat and two American.
Saudi Press Agency/Handout VIA REUTERS

The Swedish citizen, who has not yet been identified, was also facing a death sentence after being captured in Mariupol, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde said.

Saudi Arabia has maintained close ties with Russia during the Ukraine war, despite pressure from Washington.

With Post wires

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