UK & World News
Ukraine: Yanukovych Says He Remains President
Deposed Ukraine leader Viktor Yanukovych has insisted he remains his country's legitimate president.
And as commander-in-chief of the military, Mr Yanukovych said, he was sure soldiers would not "obey criminal orders".
Speaking in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, the pro-Kremlin ex-leader of Ukraine remained unswayed in his argument that "extremists" had taken power in the Ukrainian capital Kiev.
Making his first appearance since fleeing his country last month, Mr Yanukovych told journalists that a presidential election set for May 25 would be illegal.
He also warned the US not to supply financial aid to Ukraine, saying it would be illegal, and US law did not allow the government to aid "bandits".
Earlier, Ukraine's acting president Oleksander Turchynov said he was planning to create a new national guard within Ukraine "to defend citizens from criminals and from internal or external aggression".
Mr Turchynov said the mobilisation would include those who have previously served in the army as well as volunteers.
He was addressing parliament ahead of Sunday's planned referendum in Crimea over whether the region should separate from Ukraine and be part of Russia.
Russian forces have strengthened their control over the region in the run-up to the vote.
A meeting of foreign representatives is taking place in London to discuss details of sanctions that might be imposed against senior Russian officials if Moscow continues its policy towards Crimea.
One possibility could involve extending the international freezing of assets of a number of pro-Russia Ukrainians, including the ousted president.
Prime Minister David Cameron has accepted that sanctions against Russia could have an impact on Britain but said the country's own security and prosperity would be at risk if countries were able to flout international rules without facing the consequences.
The US, Italy, France, Germany, Poland, Switzerland, Japan, Turkey and Canada are all due at the talks.
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