Ukraine releases Vietnamese nationals arrested during violent raid

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The Security Service of Ukraine officers control a Vietnamese man during a raid on February 28, 2016. Photo credit: Novorossia Today The Security Service of Ukraine officers control a Vietnamese man during a raid on February 28, 2016. Photo credit: Novorossia Today

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Ukraine authorities have released three Vietnamese nationals that they arrested during a raid into a Vietnamese quarter last week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
The ministry told local media that the Vietnamese embassy in Ukraine took protection measures for Vietnamese citizens as soon as it was informed of the arrest last Thursday.
The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), the Ukrainian equivalent to the FBI, raided a Vietnamese quarter in Odessa City that day, Novorossia Today reported.
The operation in the Vietnamese quarter on Grushevskogo Street resulted in a brawl between fighters of the special division "Alpha" and residents of the “Lotus” housing complex.
According to the report, SBU officers were searching for evidence of illegal activity by immigrants, particularly illegal foreign currency transactions. They acted rather unceremoniously, breaking into the apartments of Vietnamese immigrants.
They forced opened the apartments when the owners were not home.
The Vietnamese claimed that the operatives stole money and valuables. In response to the actions of the SBU, residents blocked the exit from the complex and began to rush toward the operatives.
It was reported that a Vietnamese man named Man Hong Vinh was beaten by SBU officers. Three Vietnamese nationals were arrested following the raid.
Vietnamese ambassador to Ukraine Nguyen Minh Tri sent a team of diplomats to Odessa to work with local authorities as soon as he was informed of the arrest.
Two of the arrestees were released the same day.
The third man was released several days later, according to the embassy.
On Tuesday, Ly Quoc Tuan, head of the Consular Department, asked Ukraine to quickly settle the situation during a meeting with Ukraine ambassador to Vietnam Aleksiy Shovkoplias in Hanoi.
He said the incident stirred concern among the Vietnamese community in Ukraine.

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