Ukrainian MP Tied Up in Weapons Arrests Scandal

Seven Ukrainian citizens were arrested in Tbilisi over the weekend on charges of firearm possession. Georgian media outlets have speculated that the men arrested were fighters from Donbas, in Tbilisi to disrupt peaceful anti-election protests and plant seeds of chaos in the country during a time of tense political rhetoric. 

On Monday, the story became even more intriguing as it was revealed that Ukrainian MP Semyon Semenchenko was visiting Georgia together with the men who were arrested. wrote Yuri Biryukov, an advisor to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, on his Facebook page, Semenchenko "managed to escape" arrest. Biryukov claimed that his "various contacts" tipped him off to the information. There is speculation that perhaps Semenchenko was not arrested because he was traveling on a diplomatic passport.

Semenchenko himself responded to the rumors later in the day, denying that the arrested Ukrainians had any ties to or plans to attend the opposition rally in Tbilisi.The MP did not comment on whether he was with the men when they were arrested, but says he is now in Tbilisi and carefully monitoring the development of the legal situation.

There have also been reports of Ukrainian, and potentially Russian, passport holders being stopped at Tbilisi International Airport for additionally searches in light of the current poltiical situation. 

By Samantha Guthrie

Photo: Ukrop News 24

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04 December 2018 18:15