6 Feb 2019 16:34

Yanukovych sees his conviction as unlawful, politically motivated

MOSCOW. Feb 6 (Interfax) - Former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has described his conviction for high treason by a Kyiv court as politically motivated and accused the organizers of the 2014 Maidan events of shooting demonstrators.

"The conviction was written exactly as told by the authorities, and the pressure put on the court was unprecedented. The conviction has nothing in common with the law: it's full of violations. Everything is based on lies and hatred," Yanukovych told journalists in Moscow on Wednesday.

He also accused the organizers of the 2014 Maidan events of shooting demonstrators.

"The shootings on Maidan were organized by the Maidan organizers. There are investigations by independent journalists, which are not related to each other and which confirm this," he said.

Yanukovych left Ukraine for Russia in February 2014, following mass shooting of protesters on Maidan in Kyiv. On February 22, 2014, the Verkhovna Rada upheld a resolution proclaiming that Yanukovych had stopped performing presidential duties as stipulated by the constitution and called early presidential elections, in which Petro Poroshenko won.

It turned out later that Yanukovych was on Russian territory based on provisional asylum granted to him.

On January 24, 2019, the Obolonskyi District Court of Kyiv sentenced Yanukovych to 13 years of imprisonment after finding him guilty of high treason and abetting Russia's aggressive war against Ukraine. At the same time the court found him not guilty of abetting the encroachment on the territorial integrity of Ukraine, resulting in deaths or other grave consequences.