March 11, 2011 / 11:17 AM / 8 years ago

Ukrainian town puts its children under curfew

KIEV (Reuters) - The town fathers in a locality near Ukraine’s port city of Odessa have imposed a night curfew on children under 16 to keep them out of trouble.

The municipal council in Izmail — citing rising crime, heavy drinking and tobacco addiction among its children — said it wanted them at home and not in clubs, computer cafes or on the streets after dark.

“The children come to school and openly sleep through the first classes,” Tetyana Yenakieva, head of the local children affairs service, told Reuters by telephone. “Parents are complaining. The schools are complaining.”

According to Izmail’s official website, the town of 77,100 — once the scene of fierce battles between the Russian and the Ottoman empires — has five night clubs and a dozen bars and cafes.

Yenakieva said children under 14 were now barred from being out after 9 p.m. while under 16s could stay out just one hour longer. Police and other government agencies were in charge of enforcing the rules.

Parents of those who breach the curfew will be fined along with owners of clubs, bars or computer gaming facilities where the children are found, Yenakieva said.

Reporting by Olzhas Auyezov; editing by Mark Heinrich

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