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Militia in Sloviansk gets weapons back, starts patrolling city streets — acting mayor

April 14, 2014, 19:03 UTC+3 SLAVYANSK

The main task of teh militia is to maintain public order and fight manifestations of extremism

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© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Pochuev

Sloviansk, April 14. /ITAR-TASS/. Anti-Kiev protesters in Sloviansk, eastern Ukraine, have returned weapons to the local militia after it had taken the side of the Donetsk People’s Republic.

All weapons, except automatic guns, have been returned to the militiamen who have started patrolling the city streets, Sloviansk’s acting mayor Vyacheslav Ponomaryov told ITAR-TASS on Monday.

“Militia is on our side. They are starting to patrol the streets together with the Cossacks and the self-defense forces,” Ponomaryov said.

Their main task is to maintain public order and fight manifestations of extremism. The militia is also investigating assaults on members of the Donbass people’s volunteer force. One volunteer has been killed and another four have been injured since confrontation started.

Federalization supporters in Sloviansk have also established control over a local military airfield, according to witnesses.

They are afraid that the government in Kiev will airlift forces to crack down on the anti-Kiev protesters in Sloviansk.

A video that has appeared in the Internet shows men in civilian clothes and armed with submachine-guns encircle the airfield.

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