Ukraine leader slams opposition

Ukraine leader slams opposition

Ukraine leader slams opposition

President Yanukovych (C) meets with three former presidents in Kyiv.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych slammed today opposition calls for revolution as a “threat to national security” in a meeting with predecessors called in a bid to defuse an escalating standoff over a rejected EU pact.

“Calls for a revolution pose a threat to national security,” he told ex-leaders Leonid Kuchma, Leonid Kravchuk and Viktor Yushchenko in the landmark meeting.

“I want that this dark page is turned and is never allowed to happen again.” But in a nod to the opposition, he said he had asked the general prosecutor to secure the release of some of the demonstrators arrested after clashes with police. 

Meanwhile, in a flurry of diplomacy highlighting the struggle between East and West over Ukraine, U.S. assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland and European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton flew to Kyiv.

Nuland went to see leaders of the three main opposition parties, the opposition said. Nuland arrived in Kyiv from talks in Moscow, where the U.S. embassy said she expressed “deep concern” about the situation in Ukraine and urged Russia to use its influence to press for “peace, human dignity and a political solution.”