Ukrainian interior minister, Italian ambassador discuss Markiv case
Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and Italian Ambassador to Ukraine Davide La Cecilia discussed at a meeting on Tuesday, March 20, the possibilities for expanding cooperation between the two countries, as well as the situation with Ukrainian National Guard serviceman Vitaliy Markiv, who was arrested in Italy on suspicion of killing Italian photojournalist Andrea Rocchelli.
"Avakov and Davide La Cecilia discussed the completion of the pretrial investigation in the case of National Guard serviceman Vitaliy Markiv. The minister recalled that the Italian side had still not responded to the proposal to establish a joint investigation team with the aim of effective cooperation in collecting the necessary evidence, searching for and questioning witnesses," the media liaisons office of the Ukrainian Interior Ministry reported after the meeting.
Avakov stressed that Markiv had nothing to do with the tragic death of Italian photojournalist Rocchelli. He also added that the SBU office in Donetsk region continued to investigate the circumstances of the death of Rocchelli and Andrei Mironov, who were killed on May 24, 2014 in Andriyivka, not far from Sloviansk (Donetsk region).
Avakov and La Cecilia also discussed the possibility of expanding bilateral cooperation and countering organized crime.
"We look forward to continuing constructive cooperation and Italy's active support of our efforts in reforming the civil security sector of our state," Avakov said, adding that given current challenges and threats, Ukraine and Italy should strengthen the bilateral format of interaction, including the exchange of operational information.
He expressed hope that Italy would continue to support and strengthen measures and sanctions against Russia in response to its aggressive actions against Ukraine.
The ambassador, in turn, assured the minister that Italy supports Ukraine in the reform area.
As reported, Ukrainian serviceman Markiv was detained in Italy on June 30, 2017 on suspicion of killing Rocchelli near Sloviansk, Donetsk region, in May 2014. The Ukrainian is in the Italian city of Pavia.
Ukrainian Deputy Prosecutor General Yevhen Yenin said that Ukraine had no claims to the investigation into the case of Markiv, but relied on the objectivity of the Italian side in this matter and the consent to establish a joint investigation team.