MOSCOW, December 15. /TASS/. Ukraine’s former President Viktor Yanukovich said on Thursday he has never claimed Berkut riot police officers had never gone beyond their orders during the Maidan riots.
"My words were misinterpreted by the mass media," he said at Moscow’s Dorogomilovsky district court where he was giving testimony as an interested party on an action of former Ukrainian lawmaker and a co-founder of the Committee for the Salvation of Ukraine, Vladimir Oleinik who demands that the 2014 developments in Ukraine be recognized as a coup d’etat.
"I have never said that Berkut officers overstepped their authority. I said there were cases which are to be probed into," Yanukovich said, adding that he had instructed the prosecutor general’s office to investigate such cases to refer them to court.
"We acted in conformity with the law. I had and have no right to accuse Berkut officers of exceeding their duties," he stressed.
Ukraine’s former president started giving evidence on a lawsuit filed by the former Verkhovna Rada deputy, Vladimir Oleinik, which contained a request to recognize the 2014 events in Ukraine to be a state coup. In his lawsuit, Oleinik said that he was going to defend his right as a Ukrainian citizen in a Russian court on the basis of the UN General Assembly Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which both Russia and Ukraine have ratified.