Ukrainian Security Chiefs Meet After Gun Battle in Nation’s WestDaryna Krasnolutska
President Petro Poroshenko convened a meeting of security chiefs after a weekend gun battle in western Ukraine left at least two people dead.
Shooting broke out in the town of Mukacheve, near the Hungarian border, as members of nationalist group Pravyi Sektor clashed with police and a group of locals it said were involved in cigarette smuggling. Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk ordered an investigation into the local customs service.
“We’re working to stabilize the situation” together with the state security service, Pravyi Sektor leader Dmytro Yarosh said on Facebook. The Interior Ministry accuses the militant group of opening fire first, killing a civilian, destroying police cars and using grenades. The security service called on Pravyi Sektor to lay down its arms.
The incident highlights the challenges for Ukraine’s government outside of the nation’s east, where a truce hasn’t fully halted fighting between the army and pro-Russian insurgents. While armed militias such as Pravyi Sektor joined Ukrainian troops in that conflict, some aren’t satisfied with the country’s current direction and won’t surrender their weapons.
Two wounded members of Pravyi Sektor were hospitalized after giving themselves up, while 10 more are still hiding, private TV channel 5 reported.