Arrest Warrant Issued for Deposed Ukrainian President Yanukovych

Deposed leader, reportedly seen in Crimea, is charged with mass murder

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Vasily Fedosenko / Reuters

Newly elected Ukrainian interior minister Arsen Avakov (R) holds a loud-speaker as he addresses anti-government protesters outside the Ukrainian parliament building in Kiev February 22, 2014.

Ukraine’s interim Interior Minister Arsen Avakov has issued a warrant for the arrest of the country’s former President Viktor Yanukovych on a charge of  “mass murder of peaceful civilians,” according to AP.

The news agency reported earlier on Monday that the deposed leader had last been seen in “Sevastopol, a port on Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula that is the home of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet.”

While Yanukovych still claims to hold office, he’s been effectively pushed from power after being abandoned by state security forces and his party over the weekend after months of protests against his rule.

The country’s new interior minister is a close ally of opposition stalwart Yulia Tymoshenko and was appointed to the interim post during a parliamentary session on Saturday as Yanukovych’s embattled rule over the country crumbled.