Ukrainian Authorities Foil Bomb Plot

Posted August 22nd, 2011 at 1:30 pm (UTC-5)
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Ukraine's SBU security service says it has arrested three people who had planned to detonate a bomb in Kyiv this week during the former Soviet republic's Independence Day celebration.

The security forces say they found the home-made explosive device – which was packed with nails – when they raided the suspects' apartment on Monday. Investigators also say they found what was described as “extremist” political leaflets in the apartment.

The SBU says the attackers planned to carry out the bombing on August 24, the 20th anniversary of Ukraine's post-Soviet independence,

The celebration in Kyiv and its suburbs will include a parade, and is expected to spark a series of protests by supporters of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko. The former prime minister is under arrest and imprisoned while on trial for abuse of power charges.

Ms. Tymoshenko has denied the charges and says the trial is part of a political vendetta against her by President Viktor Yanukovych, who beat her a tight presidential contest last year. But a conviction, even with a suspended sentence, would make Ms. Tymoshenko ineligible to run for office in next year's parliamentary elections or the 2015 presidential election.