Ukraine arrests anti-corruption activist Saakashvili
- Author: Megan Austin Dec 09, 2017,
Dec 09, 2017, 10:39
Law enforcers are reported to have detained the leader of the "Movement of Popular Forces", former Georgian president and ex-governor of Odesa region, Mikheil Saakashvili.
Ukraine's Chief Prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko said Saakashvili is now in preliminary detention facility.
Prosecutors, who say Mr Saakashvili is being funded by businessmen close to Russian Federation, released audio and video recordings which they say proved he had received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the criminal group.
Saakashvili later said police had searched the wrong tent at the camp, continuing a surreal hide-and-seek game between him and Ukrainian law enforcement ever since he barged across the border from Poland three months ago.
Bilateral meetings between the presidents of Lithuania and Ukraine are traditionally held once a year.
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A statement posted on his official Facebook page called for a protest at the detention center.
Lagarde said she and Poroshenko had discussed the need to safeguard the independence of NABU and similar institutions and that they agreed on the urgency of establishing an anti-corruption court.
Lutsenko has vowed to make all efforts to regain custody of Saakashvili, who was freed by his supporters from a police van in a chaotic scene on Tuesday after being detained on suspicion of assisting a criminal organisation. Saakashvili denies the allegations against him. Saakashvili then re-entered the country illegally and staged multiple rallies in the capital demanding the president be impeached. But supporters blocked the streets and pulled him from the vehicle, and he led a march to parliament.
Mr Saakashvili also faces the threat of extradition to Georgia, where he is wanted on corruption charges.