WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 2018
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Two killed in court after grenade blast
Journal Staff Report

KYIV, Nov. 30 - A man has set off two hand grenades in a courtroom in eastern Ukraine, killing himself and one of the suspects on trial for murder, local police say, BBC reported.

The explosions occurred during a hearing in Nikopol, in Dnipropetrovsk region.

The man was the father of one of two murder victims at the centre of the trial, the police say.

In all, nine people were injured, including two other defendants, two guards, a court official and civilians.

The three defendants are accused of firing on a car and killing two passengers in February 2016 - including the son of the man who set off the grenades, local media report.

"According to preliminary reports, a man pulled out two hand grenades and detonated them at 11:20 (09:20 GMT) during a murder case hearing," the Ukrainska Pravda news website quoted police spokesperson Yaroslav Trakalo as saying.

Pictures from the scene showed blood on the floor of the wrecked courtroom.

In a statement, police said: "Today, on November 30, at 11.20, in the Nikopol court, during a hearing of the case on murder, the victim's father pulled out two grenades and blew them up.

The man died on the spot from the explosion.
"Three defendants, two convoy officers, a court officer and one civilian were injured.

All victims were taken to the hospital.

The Council of Judges of Ukraine confirmed two explosions had taken place.

In a statement on Facebook, they said: In the Nikopol City Court of the Dnipropetrovsk region, after the announcement of a break in the criminal case, there were two explosions.

There are dead and injured. Investigations are underway."

The trial was for a 2016 murder in which two people were shot and killed with a Kalashnikov assault rifle.

The man acted after it was announced that the hearing was being adjourned and the defendants were being handcuffed.

An investigation is now under way.

The conflict in eastern Ukraine means weapons are readily available among the population.

More than 10,000 people have died in the conflict, which erupted in April 2014 - shortly after Russia annexed Ukraine's southern Crimea peninsula. (bbc/ez)

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