Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Arsen Avakov believes that the Milan Court of Appeals may deliver judgment in the case of Ukraine’s National Guard soldier Vitaliy Markiv in early November.
"Today, we have presented [at a court hearing] a whole bunch of evidence that confirms the absurdity of the accusation against Vitaliy. We very much rely on fair justice and we hope that the judgment, which will be delivered, probably not today but in early November, will be in favour of Vitaliy and yet another hybrid strike on Ukraine will fail," Avakov said, addressing participants of the Special edition of Kyiv Security Forum, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.
According to the minister, there is no doubt that this situation is part of the hybrid war and what was inspired in 2015 by Russian propagandists and caught up by "some people in France and Italy" resulted in a lawsuit against the Ukrainian soldier.
However, Avakov noted that the Italian media coverage had changed significantly over the past year.
"A documentary about the Markiv case was made by Italian journalists on the basis of conclusions of Italian experts, and it greatly changed the situation around this case here in Italy. And we see the attention of the Italian press. [Representatives of] several leading media outlets attend the hearing today and they attended the previous hearing as well. I think that proving our position is very important and significant," Avakov said, emphasizing that Ukraine "will not leave its soldier in any case."
As reported, Ukraine’s National Guard soldier Vitaliy Markiv was detained in Italy in the summer of 2017 on charges of his alleged involvement in the deaths of Italian photojournalist Andrea Rocchelli and his interpreter, Russian Andrei Mironov, near Sloviansk, Donetsk region, in May 2014.
On July 12, 2019, the Pavia court sentenced the Ukrainian to 24 years in prison.