13:41 31.07.2017

Criminal case against Saakashvili in Georgia for EUR 505 embezzlement formal reason for revoking citizenship

The formal reason for revoking Ukrainian citizenship of former Georgian President and ex Odesa Regional Administration chief Mikheil Saakashvili is based on charges by Georgia's Prosecutor's General's Office (PGO) citing accusations that Saakashvili embezzled EUR 505 earmarked for a trip to Prague to attend the funeral of ex Czech President Vaclav Havel, according to members of Saakashvili's Movement of New Forces political party.

"The decree by Ukraine's president to revoke Saakashvili's citizenship is based on a criminal case against him that Saakashvili did note when filling out the citizenship form," the Movement of Political Forces press service said on Monday.

Referring to Georgian politican Eka Suramelashvili, the Movement of Political Forces said Georgia's PGO accuses Saakashvili of spending EUR 505 on a flower arrangement [wreath], which Georgia's official delegation to the funeral took with them to Prague.

"The European Union and the U.S. have expressed their concern about the criminal persecution of Saakashvili in Georgia, which represents selective justice. Even Ukraine's PGO has twice refused to extradite Saakashvili to Georgia," Saakashvili's party said, adding that Poroshenko granted Saakashvili Ukrainian citizenship on May 29, 2015, that is, after criminal cases opened against Saakashvili were known.

"President [Poroshenko's] actions [against Saakashvili], as well as steps taken by Ukraine's GPO and State Migration Service have all the signs of a criminal act, and misuse of official office in the interests of other parties," the party's press statement said.

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