MOSCOW, April 29 (RIA Novosti) – Ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his entourage took at least $32 billion with them to Russia, the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office said in a statement.
“All countries except Russia cooperate with Ukraine. According to the recent investigative information, Russia alone saw at least $32 billion exported from Ukraine,” acting Prosecutor General of Ukraine Oleh Makhnitsky told Britain's Financial Times, according to the statement.
Russian Prosecutor General Yuri Chaika earlier said that Moscow would not extradite Yanukovych, who is now in Russia, as he remains the legitimate head of Ukraine.
Makhnitsky also noted that requests to help Ukraine recover assets were answered by Austria, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. The Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine in its turn has launched a number of criminal cases.
The interview could not be found on the Financial Times website.
In mid-April, the US State Department announced that the US had sent a group of FBI agents and financial and legal officials to Kiev to facilitate the return of Ukrainian assets from abroad. Washington also called for a multilateral meeting with Ukrainian officials for the same purpose, currently being held in London.
Ukraine underwent a regime change resembling a military coup on February 22. The country’s parliament ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, changed the constitution and scheduled an early presidential election for May 25.
Moscow has repeatedly questioned the legitimacy of these actions, with the legitimacy of the election dictated by a number of conditions, including transparency and the interests of the regions. Speaking at a press conference in Rostov-on-Don Yanukovych, said that he was forced to leave Ukraine under threat of physical violence but still remains the elected head of state.