Mikheil Saakashvili

Saakashvili Released from Preliminary Detention in Kiev

Photo: REUTERS/ Gleb Garanich

A court in Ukraine released Georgia’s former president and former governor of the Odessa region Mikheil Saakashvili from detention yesterday. The court did not satisfy the motion of the Prosecutor's Office demanding Saakashvili be put under house arrest. The prosecution can appeal the Court’s decision within five days following its publication.

“This woman [the judge] refused completely everything, all the restrictions,” Saakashvili commented after his release. “Without any deputies needed, she just released me. It was a very unexpected decision… They were afraid of people. So many people were in the streets yesterday. This is a great victory.”

Saakashvili was taken to preliminary detention several days ago. Saakashvili is being charged under the 256th article of the Criminal Code of Ukraine which includes providing support for a criminal group and covering up crimes, Ukrainian authorities say. Saakashvili may face 3 to 5 years in prison if found guilty. His attorney, Ruslan Chernolutski, said the former president had declared a hunger strike for an indefinite period following his detention.

Before the detention, on December 5, Georgia’s former president Mikheil Saakashvili was arrested on the rooftop of his flat in Kyiv by the Security Service of Ukraine. However, supporters of Georgia’s former president Mikheil Saakashvili managed to forcely get the politician out of a police car when he was arrested. Saakashvili organized a rally at the Parliament after he was free from the special forces.


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