Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Police detain suspects in Ukraine's serial attacks 

Ukrainian police have detained a group of people suspected to be linked to a series of attacks across the country in the recent months, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avalon said here Monday.

In a statement on Facebook, Avalon wrote that the suspects were detained in Ukraine's western Transcarpathia region while they were preparing to blow up a monument to Hungarian people in the Carpathian Mountains.

Police have seized grenades from the detainees and launched criminal proceedings against them, Avakov said.

According to him, the preliminary investigation found that the arrested men were members of a criminal group that has prepared and performed five blasts and four other provocative acts since November 2016, aimed at "inciting xenophobia, religious intolerance and international conflicts" across Ukraine.

In particular, the group was behind the explosion in central Kiev during the Independence Day celebrations on Aug. 24, 2017, which injured three people, Avakov said.

According to the minister, the group has also organized a blast near a pilgrimage site for Hasidic Jews in the city of Uman in central Ukraine last month, which hurt two Israeli nationals.

In addition, the police accused the detained people of attacks on the Polish consulate in western Lutsk city and the U.S. embassy in Kiev in March and June this year respectively.

The Interior Minister has not disclosed the number of detainees, but later in the day his aide Anton Geraschenko said that three people were arrested.

The detainees face life prison sentence if the court confirms their involvement in the attacks.

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