11:42 09.02.2018

Saakashvili to be immediately arrested in Georgia – parliament speaker

Saakashvili to be immediately arrested in Georgia – parliament speaker

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili will be arrested in the event of his extradition from Kyiv to Tbilisi, Georgian Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze, who is on a visit to the United States, has said.

"As for the extradition of Mikheil Saakashvili, he will be arrested in Georgia. He has weak political support in our country. From the political point of view, we are not interested in where Saakashvili stays - in Georgia or Ukraine. There was a trial against him in our country, and there is a court a decision that foresees the arrest of Saakashvili when he arrives in Georgia," Kobakhidze said in his speech at Johns Hopkins University.

On January 5, 2018, Tbilisi City Court in absentia sentenced Saakashvili to three years in prison for malicious abuse of power as Georgian president.

Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko said in an interview with Ukraine's Television News Service (TSN) published on February 8 that the Georgian Prosecutor's Office had not changed its demand for Saakashvili's extradition and that Ukraine fulfills its respective international obligations.

At the same time, Lutsenko noted that Saakashvili's possible extradition to Georgia would be "the most difficult decision" for him, because it would mean his "one hundred percent imprisonment."

He also said that there were options for Saakashvili's voluntary return to any of the countries he selects, for example, to the Netherlands where his family lives, or "voluntary or forced deportation to one of the countries chosen by him, or to the country from which he illegally crossed the Ukrainian border - that is, Poland."

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