Georgian Former President Saakashvili deported to Poland

Pauline Gross
February 15, 2018

Saakashvili first became involved in Ukrainian politics after the Euromaidan protests of 2013-2014, which brought wealthy businessman Poroshenko to power.

"This person was on Ukrainian territory illegally and therefore, in compliance with all legal procedures, he was returned to the country from where he arrived", border service spokesman Oleh Slobodyan said in a post on Facebook.

In July 2017, Poroshenko revoked Saakashvili's citizenship, following allegations that he had submitted false information while applying for his Ukrainian passport. He wrote that Poroshenko, Russia's Vladimir Putin, and former Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili "want to get rid of me ..." Lawyer Ruslan Chornolutsky said there were no grounds to extradite or deport Saakashvili from Ukraine until the proceedings regarding his status were over.

Camouflage-clad Ukrainian border officers have detained the country's opposition leader in a restaurant and deported him to Poland.

At the same time, some media outlets earlier reported that Saakashvili had allegedly been detained by people in masks and jackets with the inscriptions "State Border Guard Service". He was lavished with praise and attention from business leaders and Western lawmakers after he came to power on an anti-corruption platform following Georgia's pro-democracy Rose Revolution in 2003. On February 5, his appeal against that decision was also rejected.

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In a statement, Saakashvili denounced Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.

Ukrainian media quoted an unnamed European Union spokesperson as calling on Ukraine to uphold the rule of the law and Mr Saakashvili's rights. He resigned from that post in 2016 and harshly criticized Poroshenko for failing to stem corruption.

Ukrainian authorities accused Saakashvili of abetting an alleged "criminal group" led by Yanukovych, and claim the protests he has led are part of a Russian plot against the government in Kyiv.

Saakashvili denies the charges, saying they are politically motivated.

The controversial politician then vowed to challenge the Ukrainian government.

Other reports by GizPress

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