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Rebels in eastern Ukraine carry out summary justice amid vacuum

Rebels in eastern Ukraine carry out summary justice amid vacuum
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Amid the unrest in eastern Ukraine, rebel fighters are carrying out their own form of summary justice.

One rebel fighter was tied to a road sign in Krasnyi Partyzan by fellow separatists.

According to a rebel commander, he had committed a number of offences.

“He beat up a civilian, stole his car, took money from his relatives – as he calls it ‘borrowed.’ He broke someone’s ribs, face and cracked their skull,” said rebel commander Alexander Nazarchenko.

“His son came and complained to us. We took action.”

Summary justice has become commonplace in rebel-controlled areas, targeting civilians and fighters alike.

In Luhansk, the second-largest separatist-held city, efforts are said to be focusing on setting up police departments.

“We don’t have courts so far. We are trying to resolve this problem. We are working with prosecutors to decide which action to take. Verdicts will be made when there are courts,” said Andrei Pasichnik, deputy police chief.

As there are no judges, sentences are passed down by prosecutors.

The situation is said to be slightly better in the neighbouring Donetsk region, where rebels have fashioned a would-be breakaway state dubbed the Donetsk People’s Republic.

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