US State Department: We call on Georgian authorities to protect Saakashvili's health
US State Department spokesman Ned Price commented on the transfer of former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to a prison hospital, saying that the United States is closely monitoring the process of the ex-president’s detention and treatment.
“We call on the Georgian authorities to take immediate measures to create the necessary medical conditions to maintain his psychological state and health. We continue to call on the Georgian government to treat Saakashvili fairly, with dignity, in accordance with international standards and Georgian legislation. The Georgian government is responsible for protecting prisoners from violence, including psychological abuse, as well as providing adequate medical care and not disclosing private medical information in accordance with Georgian legislation”, Price said.
US Ambassador Kelly Degnan also made a statement, calling on the Georgian government to provide Mikheil Saakashvili with the necessary medical care in a fully equipped clinic.
According to the ambassador, the United States is closely following the detention of Mikhail Saakashvili and is concerned about the health of the ex-president.
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Public Defender of Georgia Nino Lomjaria inspected the medical facility of the Gldani prison on the outskirts of Tbilisi, where Saakashvili was transferred from the prison in the city of Rustavi several times. The Ombudsman wrote in her reports that the conditions in the clinic are not suitable for treating the patient.
This became one of the main arguments of Mikheil Saakashvili’s doctors and lawyers, who categorically opposed his transfer to a prison in Gldani. The ex-president himself did not agree with this either.
The council, the civil sector, opposition, artists and many others have called on the government to transfer the former president to a civilian multidisciplinary clinic.
With this demand, the leader of the Droa political party, Elena Khoshtaria, also went on a hunger strike in parliament. The authorities stubbornly repeated that, if necessary, the prisoner would be transferred to a medical facility in the Gldani prison.
On November 8, Mikheil Saakashvili was forcibly transported to the Gldani prison. The ex-president has been on hunger strike for 40 days, demanding release from prison, where he was placed after returning to Georgia from Ukraine on October 1.
In parallel with these processes, on November 8, the opposition launched large-scale, indefinite protests with a demand to release Mikheil Saakashvili and call early elections.
Nika Melia, leader of the United National Movement Party, said that the “protest will be strong, crowded, indefinite and peaceful” and will continue until the opposition scores a final victory.