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Ukraine Protesters Demand Probe Into Acid Attack Against Activist


Kateryna Handzyuk

Dozens of protesters gathered in Ukraine's southern city of Kherson on August 1, demanding a thorough investigation into a recent acid attack against a local activist.

Activists from the National Corps far-right political party, nongovernmental organizations from Kyiv, and regional lawmakers were among the protesters.

On July 31, an unidentified attacker threw acid at Kateryna Handzyuk, an adviser to the mayor of the Black Sea port city, and ran away, according to local police.

Handzyuk, who is known for her criticism of the local police, suffered severe burns on her body and is currently in a hospital in serious condition.

Yuriy Ravelev, a doctor at the Kherson regional hospital, told RFE/RL that more than 30 percent of Handzyuk's body was burned by the acid.

Regional Prosecutor-General Vitaliy Tryhubenko met with the protesters after they threw several smoke grenades at the prosecutor’s office. Tryhubenko promised a thorough investigation.

Police launched a probe into the attack, initially listing the case as hooliganism. They later changed that into "premeditated infliction of bodily harm with a goal to intimidate a person."

On August 1, Larysa Sarhan, spokeswoman of the Prosecutor-General's Office, wrote on Facebook that the case was redefined again as "attempted murder with extreme violence."

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