- Gleb Garanich/Reuters
- Ukrainian lawmaker Ihor Mosiychuk, who was known to insult Russian politicians, was wounded in a car bomb. The bomb killed two people and wounded two more, including a political analyst. Mosiychuk has blamed Russia for the assassination attempt, but Ukrainian authorities have yet to determine who is behind the attempt.
Ukrainian lawmaker Ihor Mosiychuk, who routinely insulted Russian politicians, was wounded in a car bomb in Kyiv on Wednesday.
The explosion happened about 10 p.m. when Mosiychuk, a member of the populist opposition Radical Party, which is fiercely anti-Russian, was leaving the Espresso TV station after giving an interview, according to the Kyiv Post.
Mosiychuk did not suffer life-threatening injuries, but his bodyguard and a former Ukrainian Interior Ministry employee who was passing by were killed, the Kyiv Post reported. Two others were also wounded, including political analyst Vitaliy Bala.
It was unclear on Wednesday if the bomb was placed in a motorcycle or car, according to the New York Times, but the video below captured the explosion.
Warning the video below shows the blast that killed two:
Ukrainian authorities have yet to offer an official motive for the incident, but Ukraine’s State Security Service has categorized it as a terrorist act, Kyiv Post reported.
Mosiychuk, however, has since blamed the bombing on Russian agents, according to RFERL. “I believe that the initiators are in Moscow, the executors are in Kiev,” Mosiychuk wrote on Facebook, according to Reuters.
Radical party leader Oleg Lyashko told Pravda that it was politically motivated and was the “work of enemy special services,” most likely referring to Russia.
Deputy Kyiv prosecutor Pavlo Kononenko said that Mosiychuk could have been targeted by Russia, or by someone in Ukraine for political or personal reasons, Reuters reported.
Russian President Vlaidimir Putin denied accusations of Russia’s involvement, Reuters reported. “Beyond all doubt, these are new signs of this anti-Russian campaign which has unfortunately swept across Ukraine and Kiev,” Dmitry Peskov, a Putin spokesman, said.
Mosiychuk was well known for insulting and baiting Russian politicians, and even posted a video on YouTube threatening to kill Ramzan Kadyrov, who is Putin’s hand-picked leader of Chechnya.
Kadyrov has been implicated in a number of other assassinations, including the high-profile killing of Boris Nemtsov, the Russian opposition leader who was shot dead near the Kremlin in 2015, and most recently, the car bomb that killed Timur Mahauri, a Georgian citizen who fought with a volunteer Ukrainian battalion in the Donbas, a region in eastern Ukraine.
Since 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea and war broke out in the Donbas, at least 13 other assassinations and many more attempts have occured in Ukraine.
In late June, a Ukrainian colonel reportedly investigating Russia for an international court case was killed in a car bombing in Kyiv.
And on June 1, a Chechen assassin posing as a French journalist tried to kill a married couple, Amina Okuyeva and Adam Osmayev, in Kyiv. The Kremlin had accused the couple of trying to assassinate Putin in 2012.
When the Chechen assassin, Artur Denisultanov-Kurmakayev, was interviewing the couple in a car, he pulled out a gun and shot Osmayev. Okuyeva then pulled out her gun and shot the assassin four times. All three survived, and the Ukrainian government has accused Russia of ordering the hit.
The car bombing on Wednesday was the fifth in Ukraine in the last year.