At least four children are injured in an incident at an arms fair in the city of Chernigov
A live ammunition exploded on Saturday at a weapons exhibition in the eastern Ukrainian city of Chernigov, injuring at least five people including four children, some seriously, according to the Prosecutor General’s Office . Local media reported a higher tally, saying four adults and four children were injured.
The incident happened during an outdoor operation “gun show” held by a local museum. According to media reports, a 10-year-old boy was playing with an anti-tank weapon, believed to be a Soviet-made RPG-18 single-use rocket-propelled grenade.
The boy allegedly pointed the gun at his 12-year-old brother and discharged him, injuring his brother and several bystanders, including a 2-year-old child. According to local authorities, all of the injured were apparently only hit by the weapon’s exhaust, as the round itself exploded, hitting the roof of a house.
It was not immediately clear if the boy was capable of readying the grenade launcher on his own or if the weapon was on display in its combat-ready state. Role-playing games of this type must be unfolded before use and, once in this state, have no safety devices.
Ukrainian officials have provided conflicting accounts of the incident and the exact nature of the weapons display. According to prosecutors, the event was organized by a local territorial defense unit, displaying its own weaponry. The head of the local military-civilian administration, Vyacheslav Chaus, claimed the origins of the “dangerous exposures” were unclear and the whole event was organized to provide a “interactive” experience for children.
However, the Chernigov city council insists it was unaware of the event and did not give permission to hold it. Some media reported that the show was organized by unspecified people “volunteers,” who organized a fundraiser to provide combat vehicles to Ukrainian troops.
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