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Poland confirms Georgia’s appeal on ex-President Saakashvili

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, August 9
“The Government of Georgia requested Poland to determine if the former president of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili was legally on the territory of Poland,” said Lukas Lapinski, an official representative of the Warsaw Regional Prosecutor's Office.

He said the relevant appeal has been received by the Warsaw Prosecutor's Office by the Ministry of Justice of Georgia today.

"According to the procedure, we’ve applied to the police and the border service," he said.

It is confirmed that Saakashvil , who currently has no citizenship, was in Poland several days ago and gave a speech at an event.

Saakashvili, who remains charged in Georgia for several crimes, announced that he travelled to Poland on his Ukrainian passport and planned to visit other European countries.

“Saakashvili faces 11 years of imprisonment on four criminal cases,” a Prosecutor of Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia, Natia Songulashvili, told the Ukrainian paper Obozrevatel.

"Currently the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia is conducting four sets of criminal proceedings against Mikheil Saakashvili, on which investigation and trials are underway. Tbilisi City Court is reviewing all these cases," said Songhulashvili.

She stated that Parliament had amended the legislation after the government was changed in Georgia in 2012.

“According to the amendment, despite the number of charges, the heaviest article absorbs other articles. The sentences are not added to each other as a result of the liberalization of the legislation. For this reason, if 3-4 charges are brought against a person, he/she will get only one sentence. Accordingly, Mikheil Saakashvili faces 11 years of imprisonment if the court finds him guilty," the Prosecutor stated.

The former President of Georgia arrived in Poland on August 4 to attend the 73rd anniversary of the Warsaw Rebellion, Telewizja Republika reported.

Saakashvili, who served as Georgia’s third president from 2004-2007 and again from 2008-2013, is accused of the violent dispersal of anti-government mass protests on November 7, 2007; the unlawful raiding of the Imedi television company by riot police; and the illegal take-over of property owned by late media tycoon Badri (Arkadi) Patarkatsishvili.

In 2014 Saakashvili was officially charged in Georgia; however, at that time he was already in Ukraine.

In 2015 Saakashvili received the Ukrainian citizenship and automatically lost his Georgian nationality.

Last month, Saakashvili was deprived of his Ukrainian citizenship as he “hid he was charged in Georgia in the process of receiving his Ukrainian citizenship.”

Saakashvili lost his Ukrainian citizenship shortly after Ukraine’s President Poroshenko’s first visit to Georgia.

Prior to his visit to Poland, Saakashvili was in the United States.

The former president is not wanted by Interpol.