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Scoop of the weekend: coronavirus, Mukacheve security

Scoop of the weekend: coronavirus, Mukacheve security

Coronavirus

A Ukrainian member of the Diamond Princess cruise liner was diagnosed with 2019-nCoV coronavirus. He is the first Ukrainian to catch the virus. The ship is currently anchored off the Japanese shore. According to the Japanese Health Ministry, he shows no serious symptoms of the disease. He was moved to a hospital on the shore and will be quarantined for 14 days, according to the head of the Ukrainian parliamentary committee on health care, Mykhaylo Radutskyy.

Ukrainians arriving from the Chinese province of Hubei will be quarantined for 14 days, according to a resolution by the Cabinet of Ministers. Earlier, 54 Ukrainians agreed to be evacuated from Wuhan.

Security in Mukacheve

The National Guard and police will patrol the streets of Mukacheve in Transcarpathian Region around the clock following a shootout there on 7 February. Two men were injured as a result of the incident. Next day the special purpose police detained seven members of a crime ring who allegedly "planned to take the region under their control". They put up armed resistance and tried to escape.

Foreign policy

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met Pope Francis in Vatican. Zelenskyy said that he invited the church leader to Ukraine, in particular to visit Donbas and facilitate the release of Ukrainians held captive by pro-Russian militants and Russia. Allegedly, Pope Francis called him a "president of peace".

Domestic policy

Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk has said that Ukraine will cut the number of government officials by 10% in 2020. In particular, it is planned to be done by using more IT tools.

Crime

Three Ukrainians allegedly illegally withdrew an equivalent of over 37m hryvnyas from 23 ATMs of Russian Sberbank in Russia in 53 hours, according to the local news website Zurnal. Two of them, Oleksandr Zaytsev and Dmytro Boyko, were arrested while the third one, Yaroslav Tytarenko, managed to cross into Hungary.

Oleksandr Marynchenko and Serhiy Tamtura, members of the Berkut riot police who are suspected of killing Euromaidan protesters in 2014, returned to mainland Ukraine. In December 2019, they were handed over to Russia as part of a massive prisoner exchange. According to their lawyer, they say they "were forced to agree to the exchange" and are ready to continue taking part in the trial in Ukraine, although they do not plead guilty.

The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has exposed an aircraft maintenance company which allegedly falsified repairs reports for passenger planes in the airports of Kyiv and Odesa. Apparently, its workers did so in collusion with an airline whose flight permit has now been terminated.

Military

Ukraine will repair the Yanu Kapu tugboat and the Nikopol boat attacked by Russia in the Kerch Strait in November 2018. They have not been repaired since November 2019, when Russia returned them, because of investigative actions.

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