Georgia’s ex-President, now the governor of Odessa in Ukraine, claims he does not intend to come back to Georgia.
Saakashvili refused coming to Georgia
By Messenger Staff
Monday, October 10
“People say here Georgia is conducting elections, Saakashvili’s party will win and he will be back in Georgia,” Saakashvili told Ukrainian media NewOne.
“However, it’s not my style to run from the battlefield. Being here in Ukraine means fighting for reforms to me. This country is familiar to me and I’m going to fight to the end for Ukraine. I say this to avoid any future misunderstandings over the issue,” Saakashvili said.
Georgia’s former First Lady, Sandra Roelofs, who is in Georgia and took part in Saturday's parliamentary elections with the opposition United National Movement (UNM) had vowed that her husband Saakashvili would be back in Georgia after the elections.
“He will be with us, here in Georgia, to celebrate victory. If he needs to dig a tunnel from Odessa to Sololaki [a district in central Tbilisi] he will do this,” said Roelofs about two weeks ago at a UNM rally, the party which was founded by Saakashvili and ran Georgia from 2003-2012.
The UNM was defeated by the current ruling Georgian Dream power through the 2012 Parliamentary Elections.
Saakashvili was Georgia’s third president and led the country from 2004-2007 and again from 2008-2013.
In 2014, Saakashvili was charged for his role in several crimes, however, at that time he was already in Ukraine.
On May 30 2015, Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko appointed Saakashvili as head of the Odessa region in south-west Ukraine. At the same time he was granted Ukrainian citizenship.
Receiving Ukrainian citizenship meant Saakashvili’s Georgian citizenship was automatically revoked, as Georgian legislation prohibits people from holding dual citizenships without a Presidential exception.
Saakashvili is no longer a Georgian citizen, and if he returned to Georgia he would face a trial for the crimes he had been accused of.