Volodymyr Yermakov and Artem Kozachenko, two Ukrainian youth basketball players, were attacked with their friends, a 14-year-old Syrian boy from Gelsenkirchen and a 13-year-old German girl with Lebanese roots, at Oberhausen Central Station, Germany on Saturday. The assault was carried out by a gang of eight people, described as being of “Arabic appearance,” using knives. 17-year-old Yermakov was stabbed to death in the assault and his three companions injured.
Police in the German city of Essen have already detained two suspects in the murder of 17-year-old Volodymyr Yermakov, a Ukrainian basketball player, Oleg Nikolenko, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, wrote on his Facebook. According to the t-online portal, two teenagers aged 14 and 15 were detained on suspicion of murdering the young Ukrainian.
Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry took special control over the investigative actions and liaised with German police through Kyiv’s Consulate General in Dusseldorf, who “has already held talks with the police chief in the city of Essen. The consuls stressed the need for the investigation to be carried out as soon as possible, and the criminal to be brought to justice,” according to the Ministry the spokesperson.
According to Nikolenko, the consulate is monitoring the treatment of Kozachenko, who was wounded in the same incident.
“He is receiving the necessary medical assistance at the Essen hospital. His condition of is stable, there are no threats to his life,” he added.
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Yermakov represented the Ukrainian U-16 national basketball team in the 2022 European Championships in Bulgaria. He and Kozachenko were currently playing for the Dusseldorf ART Giants under-19 youth team.