Georgia's Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II meets with Saakashvili's mother
Giuli Alasania, the mother of former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, has met with Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia Ilia II on Saturday.
"I know that the patriarch is not indifferent to my son's fate. The meeting in presence was brief of several church hierarchs. We talked about common subjects, in particular, about how the life of every person has always been valued in Georgia and that no law on death penalty has ever existed in Georgia," Alasania told journalists.
Eka Kherkheulidze, one of the leaders of the United National Movement opposition party, told journalists that at the meeting with the patriarch, the ex-president's mother told him about the dire conditions of her son's stay in a prison infirmary.
Metropolitan Nikoloz of Akhalkalaki and Kumurdo met with Saakashvili at a Rustavi jail and gave communion to him several days ago. The Georgian Patriarchate said that the rite performed by Metropolitan Nikoloz has not been approved by the patriarch and the patriarchate.
Ukrainian citizen Saakashvili had secretly arrived in Georgia on September 29, was detained in Tbilisi on October 1 and put in jail in the city of Rustavi soon afterwards, where he declared a hunger strike. Several days ago, he was transferred to the prison infirmary in Tbilisi's Gldani district.
Saakashvili has been convicted in Georgia in absentia in several criminal cases and is being treated as a suspect in some others. The Georgian authorities warned repeatedly that he would be detained immediately after he crossed the border. He has described his detention as unlawful and the charges brought against him as falsified.