The disappearance of Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych shares striking similarities to the actions of Iraq's Saddam Hussein, said Ukraine's Ambassador to Turkey Sergey Korsunsky.
Yanukovych fled his presidential residence last Friday. His whereabouts remain unknown.
Korsunsky told an AA correspondent in an exclusive interview Wednesday that Hussein was in Iraq when he was caught, hinting that Yanukovych would also be "hunted down".
"If you are the leader of a country and if you are clean, you should stand up and resign...face the trial. Gold - even bread molds made from gold - was found in his residence. He left kilos of gold behind. If he did that you can guess what he took ...He will be hunted down sooner or later," he said.
The ambassador accused Yanukovych and his government of betraying and robbing the country.
When asked recently whether former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko would run for president, he said "It is time for new faces to appear on our political landscape."
Tymoshkenko was imprisoned in 2011 after being found guilty of abusing her power as prime minister
Russia agreed to provide US$15 billion to support Ukraine's struggling economy when Yanukovych refused to sign a trade agreement with the EU in favor of closer ties with Russia.
Ukraine's new interim government has already announced that it needs at least $35 billion in aid to stave off a default. While the U.S. and the EU have pledged aid, Russia halted the planned second aid package until a new government is formed.
The ambassador expressed hope that Russia would be part of an international aid package for Ukraine.
"Our integration with the EU is to introduce EU standards to Ukraine's political and economic life and this should not harm our relations with Russia. We cannot afford to have bad relations with Russia," the ambassador added.
- Division of Ukraine ‘impossible’
After three months of bloody anti-government protests that killed 100 people, Ukraine is now facing the threat of separatism.
"There is no such thing in Ukraine. This is propaganda by extremists. It is not going to happen, he said.
"There are many ethnic groups in the Crimea. This cannot be decided by Russia or the Tatars. It should be decided by all of the people of the Crimea. No one including Russia or the EU should welcome separatism. It would be a huge disaster."
He also asked Turkey to participate in an international assistance package for Ukraine.
"What happened in Ukraine is not going to harm Turkish interests and investments. Turkish business people would always complain about the business climate as they were asked to bribe the tax administration. This harmed our relations with investors and the country's economy. The new government will try to put an end to bribery and corruption."