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Ukraine again arrests Mikheil Saakashvili, ex-president of Georgia

10 December, 2017, 02:46 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • Ukraine

"They have detained Mikheil Saakashvili", and called for his supporters to protest.

His detention, first reported on his Facebook page, was confirmed by Ukraine's Prosecutor General.

As of 2200 GMT, a few hundred protesters had gathered near the facility not far from the parliament, shouting 'Shame!' while a large number of police in riot gear stood guard.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says he has not interfered in the work of state anticorruption agencies, comments that come amid mounting domestic and foreign pressure over Kyiv's commitment to combating graft.




Saakashvili had been taken into custody on Tuesday, but a crowd of supporters freed him from a police van and swept him away.

Saakashvili became a regional governor in Ukraine in 2015 at Poroshenko's invitation but they later fell out.

Saakashvili has won broad popularity in Ukraine with his fiery campaign against official corruption, riding a wave of public frustration over Poroshenko's failure to uproot endemic graft. That led to chaotic scenes and clashes between his supporters and police. "If he flees from the investigation, this undermines his credibility", he said. A dozen members of the anti-corruption committee on December 6 voted to recommend that the parliament dismiss Sobolev from his post as they were unsatisfied with his work in the committee.

Press secretary of the "Movement of New Forces" Mariana Pochtar said in a comment to Ukrainska Pravda that law enforcers were raiding the tent camp set up by protesters supporting Saakashvili. His backers see him as a fearless crusader against corruption but critics have said that there is little substance behind his rhetoric.

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