16:09 22.07.2017

Markiv's defense to insist on Italian prosecutors' visiting Ukraine to interrogate witnesses, inspect crime scene

2 min read
Markiv's defense to insist on Italian prosecutors' visiting Ukraine to interrogate witnesses, inspect crime scene

Prosecutors in the case of Ukrainian serviceman Vitaliy Markiv, who was arrested in Italy, need to come to Ukraine to interview nine witnesses and visit the scene of the crime of which the Ukrainian is suspected, curator of the battalion of the National Guard named after Kulchytsky, where Markiv serves, MP Andriy Antonyschak has said.

"The lawyer will insist on the visit [of Italian prosecutors to Ukraine], since there are nine witnesses here, and they should also look at the scene of the incident, because after they see it many questions will disappear," he said at a briefing in Kyiv on Friday.

The Ukrainian parliamentarian also said that a group of lawmakers visited Italy in order to state their readiness to testify and to help the Italian side establish the truth in Markiv's case.

As earlier reported Markiv was detained on June 30 in Italy on suspicion of killing an Italian photojournalist Andrea Rocchelli near Sloviansk in Donetsk region in May 2014. Markiv is being held in Pavia, Italy.

The first hearing of the case was held on July 4, however the consular service of Ukraine's Foreign Ministry said the court did not review the facts of the case and did not rule on pretrial confinement. Ukrainian diplomats visited Markiv in a pretrial holding facility in Milan.

Ukraine's Interior Ministry, meanwhile, reported Ukrainian representatives were not present at court proceedings on July 4.

Media reported that Pavia prosecutors have opened a criminal case into the circumstances of the death of an Italian and Russian journalist during 2014 in the Anti-terrorist (ATO) zone based on testimony from a French journalist. The French journalist said shelling by National Guard unit, in which Markiv served, caused the deaths of the journalists. The French journalist provided what he claimed was video evidence of his claim.

Deputy Head of the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine Yevhen Yenin, in turn, said the Italian photojournalist was killed in an area not under control of Ukrainian forces.

Ukraine's consulate in Milan has filed a motion with the Pavia court to receive information about the basis and circumstances involving Markiv's arrest. Ukraine's Interior Ministry has expressed concern about the arrest of Markiv, who traveled to Italy during planned leave.

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