Ukrainian boy shoots RPG at brother in 'interactive' arms show
An arms show organized with the purpose of "fundraising" leads a 10-year-old Ukrainian boy to almost killing his brother and several bystanders due to negligence from the local authorities.
At least five people, including four children, were injured on Saturday in Chernigov, a city in eastern Ukraine, after a live munition went off during an arms show, the prosecutor general's office said.
Local media, however, reported that at least four adults and four children were injured in the incident.
The casualties took place after a 10-year-old boy fired an RPG at his brother. The Ukrainian kid was playing with an anti-tank rocket launcher, reportedly a Soviet-made RPG-18, a single-use rocket-propelled grenade.
The boy aimed the RPG at his older brother, 12, and fired the rocket, injuring his "target" and several bystanders, which included a 2-year-old child.
Luckily, the carelessness of the organizers did not result in any deaths, as the projectile itself blasted away, striking the roof of a house. The casualties were hit by the weapon's exhaust, not the rocket-propelled grenade.
The authorities are yet to determine whether the young boy was able to load the RPG on his own or if the organizers put the lethal weapon was put on display in its battle-ready state. The RPG-18 and similar weapons must be unfolded before they are used. Once unfolded, the rocket launcher will not have any safety features.
There is nothing but conflicting accounts on what the arms show actually was, as prosecutors are saying a local territorial defense unit organized the event to showcase its arsenal.
The head of the local military-civilian administration, Vyacheslav Chaus, claimed that the reasons behind the holding of the "dangerous exhibits" were unclear, noting that the event was organized in a bid to provide an "interactive" experience for children.
On the other hand, Chernigov city council has stressed several times that it had no prior notice regarding the holding of the event and that it did not give permission for its holding.
Local media said the arms show was organized by unspecified "volunteers" who held a fundraiser with the aim of acquiring combat vehicles for the Ukrainian armed forces.
The arms exhibition was carelessly held to "fund" the Ukrainian forces to "protect" their people by jeopardizing their lives despite there being an endless stream of arms pouring into Kiev from the West.
The Pentagon signed a $182 million contract with Raytheon arms manufacturer for the purchase of NASAMS short-and medium-range anti-aircraft missile systems for Ukraine, the US Defense Department announced last Friday.
The money designated as part of the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) will be used to make the purchase.
Days before, the United States said Kiev will receive close to $3 billion in military aid. Six NASAMS systems are specifically included in the new package.
US President Joe Biden said at the time that the newly instated $2.98 billion military assistance will allow Ukraine to acquire air defense systems, artillery systems and munitions, drones, and other equipment “to ensure it can continue to defend itself over the long term.”
The latest package brought the US military assistance for Kiev since the start of the war in Ukraine to almost $13.5 billion in total.
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