Several of Odesa’s Channel 7 TV crew were fired at near the TV station studio and offices, a scuffle broke out after an altercation between TV personnel and unknown individuals, Liudmyla Hitsevych reports.
Shots were fired at the TV crew out of an air rifle by the unknown men. Two camera operators and a journalist were injured during the armed attack.
Three unidentified individuals had approached the TV crew near the offices of the TV station. After firing twice out of an air rifle the unidentified assailants fled in an automobile.
The injured men were treated at a hospital and released. The injuries were not life threatening.
The car in which the assailants fled has been identified by the police. The owner of the car is a resident of Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi [about 80 km from Odesa].The air rifle is registered in the car owner’s name. According to law enforcement officials measures are being taken to capture and detain the individual.
Olena Rotari, an editor at Channel 7, said that prior to the altercation the two cameramen who were attacked were working at the site of a traffic accident. According to Rotari, one of those who was involved in the accident had offered the cameraman money if he would agree to eliminate the footage.
Hennadiy Trukhanov, Mayor of Odesa, called on law enforcement officials to locate the assailants as quickly as possible. There has been an increase in provocations with the aim of destabilizing Odesa, the mayor said.
Sasha Borovyk, Deputy in Odesa City Council and advisor of the Head of the Odesa Regional Administration believes the incident is the result of inadequate responses to former recent incidents of violence. “Violence breeds violence. Impunity leads to an escalation of lawlessness and violence,” he said.
Local journalists are upset because the shooting occurred in broad daylight close to the center of the city at a time when security in Odesa has been beefed up [due to the anniversary of the fire that took place two years ago]. Channel 7 has appealed to Mikeil Saakashvili and to President Poroshenko not to ignore this incident.
EMPR, O. R. contributed to this publication
Image credits to 7 TV Channel