19:42 GMT02 April 2020
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    Ukraine would not have suffered from violence and civil war had former President Victor Yanukovych been defeated at the ballot box instead of being overthrown in a Western-supported coup, US congressman Dana Rohrabacher said on Sunday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — A delegation of US lawmakers is visiting Moscow for the first visit in three years.

    "There would have been no Russian aggression, no uprisings in eastern Ukraine, no massacre in Odessa. These things would not have happened if those people who opposed Yanukovych policies in Ukraine waited until the next elections where he would have certainly been defeated. Our European allies helped to instigate the overthrow of Yanukovych which created the problem," Rohrabacher said at a session of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Moscow.

    The member of the US House of Representatives stressed that the United States has an inaccurate view of the events in Ukraine, adding that there is little understanding of the significance of Yanukovych's overthrow in the subsequent violent events that led to a civil war.

    Rohrabacher also expressed optimism in the success of the Minsk agreement in bringing about a peace settlement.

    "I think the Minsk agreement did set down the goal of how we can work forward…So I am very optimistic in terms of whether we can succeed in closing this chapter and moving on to something much better," he said.

    In February 2014, violent clashes with law enforcement broke out in central Kiev's Independence Square, claiming the lives of some 100 civilians. The protests spread across the country and led to a government coup, forcing then-President Yanukovych to flee the country. Prior to the events, Ukraine's presidential elections were due to take place in 2015.

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    Tags:
    Viktor Yanukovych, Dana Rohrabacher, United States, Ukraine
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