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Man faces charges for fighting in Ukraine conflict

Artjoms Skripniks, a man from the eastern Latvian city of Daugavpils, faces criminal charges for participation in the armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine, reported LETA Wednesday.

The Latvian Security Police this week sent to the prosecutor’s office in Riga a criminal case asking to bring criminal charges against a man for illegal participation in the armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine, the Security Police said.

On January 25 this year, the Security Police opened a criminal case against a resident of Latvia over his possible illegal participation in the armed conflict in Ukraine. The person was detained upon returning to Latvia, he is currently in custody.

He was declared a suspect in the criminal case on February 1 this year. This is the first time when a resident of Latvia has been detained on suspicion of illegal participation in an armed conflict abroad.

The Security Police said earlier the man had been participating in the armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine since mid-2014.

Skripniks’ lawyer, Imma Jansone, told LETA that in 2014 her client had gone to the self-proclaimed Luhansk People's Republic in Eastern Ukraine to distribute humanitarian aid collected in Moscow. While in Ukraine, he supposedly sustained a head wound but had not participated in the hostilities.

According to his lawyer, Skripniks does not have military experience because, as a non-citizen he could not serve in the Latvian army.

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