Former President Viktor Yanukovych said that the Russian annexation of Crimea is a "tragedy" and he hopes the peninsula will one day rejoin Ukraine.
He said this in his first interview since being ousted and fleeing Ukraine with Russia's NTV television. Yanukovych said he hopes to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin to consider discussions about conditions under which Crimea could rejoin Ukraine.
Russia annexed Crimea after a rushed referendum last month. Western nations called the annexation of the peninsula illegal and have passed rounds of economic sanctions and visa bans on top officials in Russia.