Mikheil Saakashvili, Ex-President of Georgia, Arrested in Ukraine, Again
- Author: Tracy Klein Dec 09, 2017,
Dec 09, 2017, 10:39
A few thousand protesters gathered in downtown Tbilisi on December 6 at a rally organized by ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili's United National Movement party against what they call "a coordinated revenge by the oligarchic regimes" of Petro Poroshenko and Bidzina Ivanishvili (Georgia's former Prime Minister).
Ukraine's Chief Prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko said Saakashvili is now in preliminary detention facility.
Saakashvili later said police had searched the wrong tent at the camp, continuing a surreal hide-and-seek game between him and Ukrainian law enforcement ever since he barged across the border from Poland three months ago.
In a televised briefing on Wednesday, Saakashvili - supporters see him as a fearless crusader against corruption - said he would not present himself to law enforcement officials, as requested by the General Prosecutor's office.
Ukrainian Prosecutor-General Yuriy Lutsenko says his office has evidence that Saakashvili's representative received $500,000 to finance protests from Ukrainian businessmen with ties to Russian Federation.
A large crowd of his supporters then pulled him from a police vehicle.
Saaksahvili became a regional governor in Ukraine at Poroshenko's invitation, But he later turned on his one-time patron, accusing the Ukrainian leader of corruption.
Saakashvili resigned as mayor of Odessa after declaring he could not remain in the position due to corruption that President Poroshenko was sponsoring and enabling.
Law enforcement officers searched Saakashvili's apartment in Kyiv on December 5, dragged him off the roof, and bundled him into a auto.
Mr Saakashvili also faces the threat of extradition to Georgia, where he is wanted on corruption charges. He escaped after his supporters blocked a security service van.