Ukraine's president signs law on civilian use of weapons during wartime
Civilians not responsible for use of firearms against those who carry out armed aggression against Ukraine, law says
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy signed a law Wednesday allowing civilians to use weapons during wartime.
The law on Ensuring the Participation of Civilians in the Defense of Ukraine regulates "the procedure for issuing and returning firearms and ammunition to civilians to protect the country during wartime and stipulates that civilians are not responsible for the use of firearms against persons who carry out armed aggression against Ukraine," Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, said in a statement.
Additionally, Ukrainian citizens have the opportunity to participate in repelling and deterring armed aggression by the Russian Federation and/or other states using their own weapons.
The law was passed in parliament last Thursday.
At least 516 civilians have been killed and 908 others injured in Ukraine since Russia launched the war against its neighbor, according to UN figures, with the real toll feared to be higher.
More than 2.1 million people have fled Ukraine to neighboring countries, according to the UN Refugee Agency.