(Al Jazeera) Russian President Vladimir Putin says the 2014 popular uprising that saw former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich forced from office was the result of a “coup” orchestrated by the United States and supported by Washington’s European allies as he appealed for greater cooperation on the continent.
Writing an op-ed in German newspaper Die Zeit to mark the 80th anniversary of Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II, Putin described on Tuesday the toppling of Yanukovich as an “anti-constitutional armed coup”.
Moscow has long accused the US of fomenting turmoil in Ukraine, where tensions with neighbouring Russia have grown since Yanukovich, a pro-Kremlin leader, was removed.
After his February 2014 exit, Russia annexed the Black Sea region of Crimea and gave its backing to separatist fighters as an armed conflict erupted in Ukraine’s east.
Post-Cold War dynamics, which left countries faced with an “artificial choice” between siding with the West or Russia, had shaped the “Ukrainian tragedy”, Putin wrote.