Ukrainian court rules to free Saakashvili

by Garry Watts December 12, 2017, 16:05
Ukrainian court rules to free Saakashvili

"Enormous pressure was imposed upon me throughout the past week to make me turn a blind eye to what Saakashvili, who is a stateless person, allows himself", he said.

A judge in Ukraine on Monday rejected a request by prosecutors to place former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili under house arrest during a pre-trial investigation. He has crossed the red line.

The rally appeared to be the result of Saakashvili and his supporters' dramatic standoff with Ukrainian authorities last week.

He also said Saakashvili would refuse food while in detention.

Saakashvili was president of Georgia from 2004 to 2013 but acquired Ukrainian nationality and served as a governor in Ukraine before falling out with Poroshenko.

Yegor Sobolev, an ally of Saakashvili's who was removed Thursday as chairman of a parliamentary anti-corruption committee by Poroshenko's faction and its allies, called for the president's dismissal.

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"Poroshenko is an oligarch, and it's silly to expect him to fight corruption", Shapovalov said.

A pariah of the Kremlin after Georgia fought a short war with Russian Federation in 2008, Saakashvili was a vocal champion of the three-month uprising in Kiev that toppled the Moscow-backed Yanukovych government in 2014 and turned Ukraine towards a pro-EU course. Saakashvili, the former president of Georgia and an ex-governor of Odessa, was detained on allegations that he assisted a criminal organization.

Saakashvili, 49, entered Ukrainian politics after serving as president of Georgia following the Georgian "Rose Revolution" he spearheaded in 2003.

He fled to Ukraine in 2014 and was granted Ukrainian citizenship.

Saakashvili's Georgian citizenship was revoked in 2015 when he obtained a Ukrainian passport.

He forced his way into Ukraine in September, barging across the border with Poland with the help of a crowd of supporters.

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