The preliminary explanation of former Ukrainian Interior Minister Yury Kravchenko's death is suicide, Security Service chief Oleksandr Turchynov said on 1+1 television.
"When I examined the scene, it seemed to me, and the preliminary investigation came to the same conclusion, that this was a suicide. First, nobody was in the yard where Mr. Kravchenko went out except for his daughter, who was walking a dog. He entered a shed and closed the door behind him. Several minutes later two shots were heard," Turchynov said.
Kravchenko apparently shot himself through his lower jaw the first time. "But his hand might have faltered at the last moment, and the bullet passed through his mouth. This wound was far from being fatal; it was not even serious. After that, he fired into his right temple," he said.
Ukraine’s Ex-President Kuchma Comes to Kiev Due to Ex-Minister’s Death
Former president of Ukraine, Leonid Kuchma, came back to Kiev on Saturday from the Czech resort of Karlovy Vary.
Kuchma interrupted his vacation after the former Ukrainian interior minister Yuri Kravchenko was found dead.
Kuchma has not given any comments on the fact yet.
Kravchenko who possibly killed himself had left a note blaming Kuchma of political intriguing. The minister was one of the key figures in the case of journalist Georgy Gongadze’s murder in 2000. He was to be interrogated on Saturday.
On Friday, Kuchma told 1+1 television channel he intends to go to the Prosecutor General’s office and “give all necessary evidence.” Speaking on Kravhcenko’s death, he said that the minister suffered enormous pressure that “anyone could hardly bear.”
“I knew him well. He could never have given that criminal order,” Kuchma said.
After the report on Kravchenko’s death, Ukrainian communists demanded Kuchma’s immediate arrest.
A former interior minister of Ukraine, Yuri Kravchenko, was found dead in his country house on Friday morning, Russia’s Interfax news agency reports.
The agency quoted its sources in the Ukrainian police as saying that Kravchenko had committed suicide. Investigators headed by the chief of the Ukrainian Security Service have gone to the scene.
On Friday Kravchenko was to be questioned in court in connection with the killing of opposition journalist Georgy Gongadze in 2000.
The decision to interrogate Kravchenko was seen as a dramatic escalation in the search for the people behind the killing of Gongadze. Earlier this week the Ukrainian authorities reported they had detained the suspected killers who were all police officers.
Ukrainian Prosecutor-General Svyatoslav Piskun announced that secret recordings made by former presidential security guard Mykola Melnychenko in former President Leonid Kuchma’s office from the summer of 1999 to September 2000 will be allowed as evidence in the investigation if their authenticity is established by an international commission, Radio Free Europe reported.
Piskun then invited Melnychenko, who has been granted refugee status in the United States, to return to Kiev with his original tapes and recording equipment to take part in the authentication process. To pave the way for his return, Piskun said Melnychenko’s safety would be guaranteed and said that charges against him pertaining to the revelation of state secrets would be dropped.
Funeral for Ukraine's Kravchenko scheduled for Monday
A civil funeral ceremony for former Ukrainian interior minister Yury Kravchenko, who died under unclear circumstances on Friday, is due to be held at the Ukrainian Cabinet club on Monday, Interior Ministry spokesman Kostiantyn Stohniy said.
Interior Minister Yury Lutsenko "is ready to provide transportation and funds" for the ceremony and burial, Stohniy told Interfax.
Stohniy said there had been no official request from Kravchenko's family to organize the ceremony.