Protesters take control of Kiev, Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych refuses to resign

By Kyle Johnson,

Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych has left the now captured capital of Kiev for a more supportive Kharkiv. He denounced parliament's recent moves and protesters taking over the capital city as nothing more than a "coup."

The Evening Standard reports that anti-government protesters seized the president's home and office on Saturday.

Yanukovych traveled to the city of Kharkiv, where the majority of his supporters reside, and has refused to step down. An ally, Hanna Herman spoke with the Associated Press and said, "As much as some people want it, he has no intention to leave the country."

The president also denounced parliament, who voted on Saturday to have him removed from office, according to USA Today.

In a televised statement, Yanukovych spoke out against recent actions saying, "What we see today is a coup -- I did everything to prevent the bloodshed."

Opposition legislators said their vote to remove the president was necessary as he was "not capable of fulfilling his presidential duties."

The whirlwind of actions come just a day after parliament voted to restrict the president's power and agreed to set up elections in an effort to curtail all the violence. They also amended the criminal code to release jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko.

Tymoshenko, who spent more than two years in jail, was released on Saturday.

photo: premier.gov.ru [CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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