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Alleged Right Sector Shooting In Kharkiv

Pro-Russian demonstrators take part in a rally in front of a statue of Lenin in Kharkiv on March 8.
Claim: Members Of Right Sector Fired At And Wounded A Group Of Pro-Russian Protesters On March 8

Veracity: Unconfirmed

According to a Russian Foreign Ministry statement, on March 8 in Kharkiv "well equipped masked men with guns opened fire on peaceful demonstrators. Some were wounded as a result."

But our Ukrainian Service reports that Mykola Fomenko, the head of Kharkiv's Interior Ministry investigative department, says that he is aware of no such shooting on March 8.

On March 9, a Kharkiv gunman did shoot and kill 2 patrons at a cafe, wounding another, but the Interior Ministry claims there is no evidence that this is tied to the ongoing crisis.

Our Ukrainian Service correspondent in Kharkiv also reports that he has not been able to confirm that a protest-related shooting took place and we have been unable to locate videos or photos to back up the claim.

The Foreign Ministry Statement also claims that seven Russian journalists were detained in Dnipropetrovsk.

Again, there is no specific information -- like names of journalists, organizations, video, photos -- and Ukraine's Foreign Ministry has called the claim "false information."

Russian media has reported on the ministry statement but also has not provided specific information.

There have, however, been several reports of attacks by pro-Russian activists or paramilitaries on Western journalists in Crimea and these have been backed up by video and photographic evidence.

Below, video, and then explanation, of an attack on a Bulgarian journalist in Crimea.

The Russian Foreign Ministry statement does not comment on these events, focusing instead on the alleged eastern "lawlessness."

"In Russia there is outrage at the lawlessness that now prevails in the eastern regions of Ukraine as a result of the militancy of the so-called 'Right Sector' with the connivance of the new government, as they call themselves," the statement says.

-- Glenn Kates

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