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UPDATE (22:30 CEST, 21.07.2020): The gunman released hostages after President Zelensky read the text that the attacker demanded: “Film “People of Earth” 2005, watch for everyone”. After this the apparently mentally ill attacker was detained.
On July 21, a gunman took 20 people hostage on a bus in the city of Lutsk in western Ukraine. The attacker is armed and claims he has rigged the bus with explosives and planted a bomb in the city. He also fired several shots from inside the vehicle. However, no casualties have been reported so far.
SWAT and Police units cordoned the site of the incidents and started negotiations with the attacker. However, despite the possible threat of an explosion, an intense traffic can be seen on the videos from the site.
Правоохранители ведут переговоры с вооружённым мужчиной, который захватил автобус с 20-ю заложниками. Введён оперативный план "Заложник". По непроверенной информации мужчина заявляет, что в Луцке есть еще один автобус с заложниками. pic.twitter.com/wa0knFe76B
— Panthera tigris altaica🇷🇺 (@PAltaica) July 21, 2020
Police told media that the suspect has identified himself as ‘Maxim Plohoi’ (Maxim Bad), but has not made any concrete demands as of yet. The attacker claims to be a writer of the book called “Philosophy of a Criminal”. He was reportedly treated for mental illness in the past.
Local media say that the real name of the attacker is Maxim Krivosh. The gunman also had a Twitter account in which he posted several comments ‘against the system’. A few hours after the start of the incident in Lutsk, the account was suspended.
— RT (@RT_com) July 21, 2020
Photos from the scene:
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky already claimed that he took situation under his personal control. How, the comedian is going to manage the anti-terrorist operation in the crowded city is the question.
Тривожні новини з Луцька. Вранці, о 9:25, до місцевої поліції зателефонував громадянин, який повідомив про те, що…
Another improtant question is how the mentally ill person with a criminal record got an access to weapons and explosives. While Western diplomats and Ukrainian politicians continue turning a blind eye on the situation, for any independent observer the dramatic increase of illegal weapon trade and weapon trafficking in Ukraine is an open secret.
Since 2014, various pro-Kiev illegal, semi-legal armed groups (often with neo-Nazi ideology) have become a constant source of illegal weapons from the combat zone in eastern Ukraine. Many pro-Kiev fighters that were deployed in the combat zone return to other parts of the country with lots of weapons and then participate in various criminal schemes. The sitaution is further complicated by the corruption in the Armed Forces that also contributes to the illegal weapon trade. These factors became the core problem behind the growth of organized crime and ability of various destructive elements to gain access to various weapons.
Even Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who seeks to keep friendly and constructive relations with Ukraine, admitted in 2019 that his country was forced to increase restrictions on the Ukrainian-Belarusian border due to the increase of illegal weapon flow.
Local Ukrainain media outlets regularly report about casualties as a result of the usage of automatic rifles, grenades and other weapons during domestic conflicts or just some ‘accidents. On July 21, an improvised explosive device was neotraized by security forces in Kiev, near the Minskaya Metro station.
— Николай (@shts_og) July 21, 2020
The political system created by the regime, which came to power in 2014, has been exploiting street violence, political prosecutions, war propaganda and legalized terror as the main tools of its governance approach. A wide network of neo-Nazi groups attacks political opponents of the government and even used to intervene in the religious life of the country. It’s hard to imagine any another country in eastern Europe where the government allows and encourages attacks of radical groups on other people on the basis of religious, ethnic or political hatred. These actions are officially supported by Ukrainian security services.
For example, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) opened a case against children’s book writer Oleg Slepnin in Cherkasy city for his critical comments regarding actions of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, which received the tomos of autocephaly (decree of ecclesial independence) from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople in January 2019. The SBU described him as an ‘anti-Ukrainian agitator’ controlled from Russia. The arrests and accusations of treason against people that opt to criticize the course of the current Kiev regime is an ordinary practice. Members of Ukrainian opposition parties, like the Party of Shariy, regularly became targets of attacks and violence by radical pro-government groups.
However, the propaganda and censorship cannot hide the deteriorating economic, social and security situation in the country. The popularity of the ruling regime is falling, while alternative centers of power are increasing their influence despite the resistance of the government. Over the past year, the opposition political groups promoting the idea of the need of political settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, the canonic Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchy) and conservative parts of the society that stand against the foreign (globalist) rule over Ukraine have significantly expanded their popularity. At the same time, the political formations and pseudo-church organizations created to promote the interests of the Kiev regime and its Western puppeteers are now in deep crisis. Nonetheless, it would be wrong to expect that the situation in Ukraine could improve significantly in any foreseeable future as long as the current political regime (regardless personalities representing it) remains in power.
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