18:03 GMT18 January 2021
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    An armed man on a bridge in Kiev has fired several shots, spokesman of the National Police of Ukraine Yaroslav Trakalo said, adding that the case has been designated as preparation for a terrorist attack.

    Police in Kiev have launched a special operation following reports about an armed man with an alleged explosive device who threatened to blow up a bridge in the Ukrainian capital.

    Ukrainskaya Pravda, citing Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov, reported that the attacker on the Metro bridge has already been detained.

    The unknown man reportedly also threatened to blow up government offices.

    "An unidentified man has opened fire and is threatening to set off a bomb. We are conducting a special police operation. Representatives of all services are present here [at the scene]. The traffic of cars and trains on the bridge has been halted", Kiev Police Chief Andriy Kryshchenko said, as quoted by his press secretary Oksana Blyshchik in a Facebook post.

    ​The Main and Territorial Police Directorates, patrol squads, dog handlers with service dogs, special forces, and specialists with the explosion service have already arrived at the scene, the spokesman stated, adding that investigators have qualified the case as "preparation for a terrorist act".

    ​Earlier in the day, traffic at several metro stations in Kiev was reportedly suspended due to the threat of a suspected explosive device.

    Since 2012, Ukraine has tightened its punishment for false reports of explosive devices, providing for imprisonment of up to six years, and in case of repeated crime - up to eight years.

    metro, explosive devices, bridge, Kiev, Ukraine
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