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Ukrainian Border Guards Deny Shooting Russian Man Taking Selfie

A view shows a checkpoint on the Ukrainian-Russian border in Ukraine.

Ukraine's police denied accusations Monday from Russia's Federal Security Service, or FSB, that Ukrainian border guards had shot and injured a Russian man who tried to take a selfie against the backdrop of a border checkpoint.

Russian media reported earlier Monday that a Russian man was in a hospital being treated for a chest wound after Ukrainian border guards opened fire on him.

Ukraine's border guards service said in a statement cited by Ukrainian media that border guards were forbidden from firing into Russian territory, and that an inspection carried out following the reports showed that no ammunition was missing and no other signs of a shooting were detected.

“The state border service of Ukraine officially declares that this information [about a Russian being shot at from the Ukrainian side of the border] is utterly unfounded and is of a purely provocative nature,” the border service was cited as saying.

Russian media had cited a spokesperson for the border guard service of the FSB as saying that three residents of the town of Novorussky in the Rostov region, which borders Ukraine, had been spending Sunday at a lake near the village and in the evening decided to take their picture at a nearby border checkpoint.

A Ukrainian serviceman stationed at the checkpoint shouted "stop" and then opened fire, injuring one of the "selfie aficionados," Nikolai Sinitsin, a spokesman for the border guard service in the Rostov region, was quoted as saying by news agency RIA Novosti.

According to the FSB account, the would-be selfie-takers ran away and flagged down a passing car to take them to a hospital, RIA Novosti reported. The injured man was treated for a chest wound, media reports said.

The immensely popular selfie fad in Russia has led to a spate of deadly incidents, prompting the Interior Ministry to issue an illustrated guide this month on taking a "safe selfie." Pictures in the guide include warnings against taking a selfie on the roof of a train, on a highway or on railway tracks.

 No warnings against taking selfies at military installations or at border checkpoints have yet been included.

Contact the author at newsreporter@imedia.ru

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