A basketball player was stabbed to death... and a Syrian young man and a Lebanese girl were injured

A 17-year-old Ukrainian basketball player was stabbed to death after an altercation at a bus stop in the German city of Oberhausen, local police said Monday.


Volodymyr Yermakov, who played at the junior level with the Ukrainian national team and the German team ART Giants Dusseldorf, died in hospital after the accident that occurred on Saturday evening.


The police reported that Yermakov and a Ukrainian colleague who turned out to be Artem Kozachenko, according to what their club revealed, got into a “verbal” altercation with other teenagers on a bus in the city center, adding that investigations into the background of the altercation are continuing.


The police said that after the two groups got off the bus, the altercation escalated and the teenagers entered into a “physical confrontation,” revealing that “according to preliminary investigations, knives were pulled (in the fight).”


Yermakov and his 18-year-old compatriot were injured in the fight, in addition to a 14-year-old Syrian boy and a 13-year-old German-Lebanese girl, but the two Ukrainians suffered “life-threatening injuries,” according to a police statement.


The four victims were taken to hospital, where Yermakov died "shortly afterwards during an emergency operation."


The police indicated that they arrested a 15-year-old German-Turkish boy and charged him with manslaughter.


It also temporarily arrested a 14-year-old Greek-German boy, before releasing him because he could not prove his involvement in the incident.


The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry called on Monday to conduct an investigation into the incident “as soon as possible and bring the criminal to justice.”


The Ukrainian Basketball Federation said that the players were "attacked with knives in the street simply because they were Ukrainian."


As for the German club ART Giants Dusseldorf, “Events happen that sometimes cannot be understood or put into words. We mourn and bid farewell to our young player, Volodymyr Yermakov, who fell victim to an act of violence on Saturday evening and died.”


He continued: “In order to escape the war in his native country, he moved to Düsseldorf in July 2023, where he found his new home. Volodymyr was very popular among his coaches, teammates and friends. What remained in the memory was the young man whose daily life was characterized by the pure joy of life.” And sporting ambition.