Will the President of Georgia pardon Saakashvili?
Rally in Tbilisi against a pardon of Saakashvili
A rally in Tbilisi against a pardon of former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili took place near the residence of Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili in Tbilisi on the evening of December 28. It was organized by citizens loyal to the current authorities.
They objected to a possible pardon of Saakashvili, who is now in a clinic after a long hunger strike, and his transfer abroad for treatment.
President Salome Zurabishvili came out to address protesters, but said the demonstrators were not sincere in their slogans:
“You came here after rumors spread by some people. But it is interesting, those people who spread rumors about me – where were they in 2007, where were they when the tragedies of the Saakashvili era took place? Where were they when I was standing in the street? I’ll tell you where they were. Those who spread rumors today were either in Misha’s headquarters or held high positions.”
The president then held a special briefing, during which she repeated that those who are now protesting a pardon of Saakashvili, during his reign “warmly sat in Misha’s headquarters, and others in Kartu Bank”:
“How can they talk to me about morality?”
According to Zurabishvili, information about a pardon for Mikheil Saakashvili “will be given when it is available.”
“What do these two political forces have in common? First of all, the arrival of Misha.
Why did one force incite [the United National Movement opposition party], inviting him to come and promising a revolution, saying that the people will take to the streets.
And the latter [the ruling Georgian Dream party] instigated otherwise, using the peculiarities of the Georgian character — if you are a hero and not a coward, then come back. Both political forces were interested in him coming back and now it is clear why. Because the whole year we are in disputes and discussions, in the struggle around Misha. There is no other topic, it is impossible to talk about another topic,” Zurabishvili said.
“They threaten me with my career, that I’ll kiss my career goodbye, I don’t know, maybe they forget how old I am. Those who know me really know that I am only interested in this country and exclusively in its European future,” Zurabishvili said at an emergency briefing.
- Global rally in support of Saakashvili at Georgian embassies announced
- “Georgian government is responsible for Saakashvili’s health” – US State Department
With a petition to pardon Mikheil Saakashvili, which has already been signed by more than two thousand people, a group of women addressed the President of Georgia.
#SaveMisha – under this slogan, Advisor to the President of Ukraine Alexei Arestovich and human rights activist and blogger Mark Feygin urge people around the world to hold a rally in support of Mikhail Saakashvili – to come on January 4 between 12 and 14 hours local time to the Georgian embassies in different countries of the world.
On the same air, Aleksey Arestovich noted that “Mikhail Saakashvili is being destroyed in prison for show” and called on viewers to participate in a global action, because “we cannot allow a person to be treated like this in the modern world.”
On December 20, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called on the Georgian government to transfer Mikheil Saakashvili for medical treatment abroad. Moldovan President Maia Sandu joined his call.
In response, Georgian Dream chairman Irakli Kobakhidze noted that Zelensky’s statement would not matter, and Sandu “should take a closer look at the sixth president of Moldova [meaning the fifth president of Moldova, Igor Dodon], who is still in prison.”
A few days ago, Mikheil Saakashvili sent a letter to Ukrainian journalist Dmitry Gordon, saying that, according to a report by American toxicologists, Saakashvili was poisoned in prison with a mixture of toxic substances that he wrote were supposed to kill him. However, “I did not die, but I still have all the symptoms, and without treatment it will lead to death,” Saakashvili writes. In response to this letter, Dmitry Gordon released a video message demanding that Saakashvili be transferred abroad for treatment.
On December 24, Saakashvili also wrote a letter to Russian human rights activist Mark Feigin, in which he notes that they wanted to kill him on Putin’s orders. The letter, which Saakashvili wrote in Russian, Feigin posted on his Twitter.