Yanukovych to speak his mind before Crimea referendum

Moscow, March 11: Ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych has plans to make an official statement Tuesday in Russia, one of his close aides has revealed.

“The speech will take place in Rostov-on-Don, the exact time and place are to follow,” Xinhua quoted local media citing a source close to Yanukovych as saying. It was, however, not immediately known the form of his address.

Yanukovych was last seen at a press conference Feb 28 in Rostov-on-Don, a Russian port some 1,000 km southwest to Moscow.

He has already said that remains as the only legitimate president of Ukraine, and will not seek military support from Moscow to resolve the crisis in his country.

The planned Tuesday statement has come five days before Crimea, a Ukrainian autonomous republic, is scheduled to hold a referendum on its future status.

Russia has said it will respect the “historic” decision Crimean people would take, while most of Western countries declined to recognise the results.

IANS