A gunman in Ukraine armed with an automated rifle and grenades has surrendered to police and launched 13 hostages after the nation’s president consented to his demand to suggest the 2005 film Earthlings starring Joaquin Phoenix.

The area of interest film suggestion, delivered by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy over Facebook, helped finish an hours-long standoff within the western Ukrainian metropolis of Lutsk, the place 44-year-old Maksym Kryvosh seized a bus and demanded that dozens of presidency officers admit to being “terrorists”.

During the hostage disaster, which started on Tuesday morning, Kryvosh opened fireplace and threw a grenade at a police drone. The experiences of automated gunfire despatched some journalists on the scene diving for canopy. No one was significantly injured throughout the standoff. A bullet was reported to have practically missed the nationwide chief of police.

Joaquin Phoenix

Earthlings starring Joaquin Phoenix was essential of the poor remedy of animals. Photograph: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock

The gunman additionally spoke with journalists and monitored social media throughout the hostage disaster, though his Twitter account was finally deactivated. One hostage, who spoke with a journalist by phone throughout the disaster, begged them to place the gunman in contact with the president’s workplace.

Zelenskiy spoke instantly with Kryvosh, a spokeswoman stated, after which three of the hostages had been launched from the bus. The relaxation had been launched shortly after he posted a short video online a couple of Joaquin Phoenix film essential of the poor remedy of animals.

“The film Earthlings from 2005. Everyone should watch it,” Zelenskiy stated within the video launched over Facebook. It was deleted after Kryvosh surrendered and changed with a word thanking police and others who helped finish the hostage disaster.

“Human life is the most important value. We have not lost anyone,” Zelenskiy wrote.

Kryvosh is an animal rights activist, native media reported. He had additionally spent practically a decade in jail on fraud and weapons prices and was described by police as “unstable” after the incident.

Kryvosh, holding an automated rifle and sporting a beret, wrote a greater than 500-page manifesto and delivered an anti-government screed shortly earlier than he boarded the bus in Lutsk on Tuesday and informed police that he had rigged it with explosives.

Late on Tuesday, the Ukrainian inside minister, Arsen Avakov, stated: “The film … is a good one. And you don’t have to be so screwed up and cause such a horror for the whole country – you can watch it without that.”

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