Police and vigilantes join forces in Ukrainian city of Lviv

Now Reading:

Police and vigilantes join forces in Ukrainian city of Lviv

Text size Aa Aa

In the Western city of Lviv Ukranian media is reporting vigilantes and police have joined forces in a bid to restore law and order.

The move follows days of violence in the city, with many police reportedly refusing to wear their uniforms for fear of being attacked.

Lviv’s Police Chief Oleksandr Rudiak confirmed his cooperation with activists.

‘‘The message is that we will cooperate with the regional council and activists in order to return calm to the city’s streets and restore constitutional order,’‘ Rudiak said.

Describing themselves as the city’s ‘auto-defence’, the group’s leaders said they had no other choice other than to take control.

‘‘There is nobody who is not afraid, but given the situation we had to do something, we had to take charge in order to return calm to the streets. We had to take things into our own hands as the police cannot help us,’‘ said one vigilante.

Earlier this week several hundred anti-government protesters stormed Lviv’s interior ministry offices and police headquarters, setting them alight, as well as seizing a large cache of weapons and ammunition.

In all some 500 guns were reportedly stolen, which still remain unaccounted for. Around 30 people were hurt in the violent raid.