The smuggler did not react upon the warning shot of the Police on the territory of Slovakia, not far from Ukrainian-Slovakian border between the villages of Zboj and Novа Sedlica, and it cost him life.
On Saturday morning, not far away from the border to Transcarpathia, a Slovakian border patrol intended to stop a group of illegal migrants by warning shots, but there was no reaction on the side of the border violators. According to the information provided by the the website noviny.sk, after the second attempt a shoot-out started. One person of the group of border crossers took a gun and tried to shoot to policeman, but he failed and was shot by police. According to the information of the press-secretary of Sobrance Border Police, Agnessa Kopernytska, police investigates the case and no information can be given yet. “The weaponed smuggler of Ukrainian origin was shot in a shoot-up intending to cross the border illegally with 5 migrants” – the head of press-service of Ministry of Interior Ivan Netik reported to Mass Media concerning the incident. The illegal migrants were not injured. The Slovakian Ministry of Interior said that first aid was provided to the injured Ukrainian, but he died at the place of the incident. “I have already reported that after the beginning of Russian-Ukrainian crisis the smugglers became more aggressive, and the worst thing is that they began to be armed. I also have said that we cannot exclude that in the nearest future a situation will arise in which the armed conflict can end with health or life loss. And here it now happened”, Mr. Kalinyak stated. Negotiations on the incident between the Special Service of Slovakia, representatives of the Ukrainian Ministry of Interior and Ukrainian border guards continue. In total, since the beginning of 2014, the Slovak Department of Border Police and the Slovak Police on Foreigners’ Affairs prevented 35 cases of illegal border crossing from Ukraine to Slovakia. 107 foreigners were detained. The majority, 40 migrants were Afghan citizens, 18 were from Ukraine, 11 from Somalia, seven from Bangladesh and seven from Palestine.
BMPU has serious doubts on the statements of the Slovak authorities:
1. Is is very unusual that Ukrainian smugglers are joining groups of irregular migrants to Slovakia. In the “normal” case, they are not leaving the territory of Ukraine.
2. It is very unusual as well, that smugglers are carrying weapons. At least there haven’t been information on that in the Ukrainian media the last years and it can be assumed, that Ukrainian border guards would probably mention this fact in their press communication.