ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia – Viktor Yanukovych, Ukraine's ousted president, calls Russia's annexation of Crimea "a tragedy" and says he hopes the Black Sea peninsula can come back under Ukraine's fold someday.
Yanukovych was speaking Wednesday in an interview with The Associated Press and Russia's NTV television, his first since fleeing Ukraine after months of massive protests. He said he hopes to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss the conditions under which Crimea could rejoin Ukraine.
Russia annexed Crimea last month following a hastily-called referendum held after Russian troops had taken over the region. Ukraine and the West have rejected the move as illegal.