One Killed After Grenades Explode at Local Government Meeting

Powerful BLAST Ends Meeting - 1 DEAD

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A local politician stormed into a contentious village council meeting on Friday, December 15th, and tossed three grenades into the air. Keretsky is a small village in Ukraine. Some of the 26 persons hurt in the explosions are in critical condition. So far, one casualty has been verified.

Police posted video of the incident to social media after it happened, and the meeting was also being streamed online. A man in black entered the room around 1.5 hours into the contentious council discussion, listened for a while, and then left with another man. Standing in front of the doorway, he tried to get everyone’s attention a few minutes later when he reappeared. Right then, he retrieved three grenades from his pocket, removed their safety pins, and hurled them into the room’s center. Shocked council members screeched and dove for shelter as smoke billowed from the detonation of the bombs.

The perpetrator is allegedly Serhii Batryn, a member of the Servant of the People Party, which is headed by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. The Ukrainian Secret Service said they are investigating it as an act of terrorism, as well as charging Batryn with illegal use of weapons. Initial reports indicated that Batryn died in the blasts, but police later said he was at the hospital in critical condition.

Local media have reported that Batryn had a lengthy grudge against Mikhail Mushka, the village chief, though authorities have not yet revealed a motive for the attack. Supposedly, Batryn was unhappy with Mushka’s performance as village chief, which is why he was concerned over a plan to offer Mushka a bonus and a 50% raise.

The attack’s possible connection to the conflict with Russia is being investigated by local officials. The continuing conflict with Russia probably allowed Batryn to obtain the grenades, though it may have nothing to do with it.

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