Former Georgian leader to be arrested
A Georgian court issued an arrest warrant for former president Mikheil Saakashvili on charges of abuse of power.
The ex-leaders’ camp asserted the ruling is politically motivated and triggered concern from Western leaders as well.
According to media reports, the Tblisi City Court issued the order for Saakashvili and two other prominent officials on the same charges.
Mr. Saakashvili is facing charges of abuse of power and use of excessive force against protesters in Tbilisi in November 2007.
The former leader has been living abroad since his presidency ended in November.
The ruling against the former leader has created clamor and threatened stability throughout the country of 4.5 million especially as economic crisis continues to plague the country.
Saakashvili, 46, came to power in the bloodless and peaceful “Rose Revolution” of 2004.
Last week, Mr. Saakashvili denied the accusations and pointed out instead that the former prime minister and head of Georgian Dream, Bidzina Ivanishvili is involved in manipulating the judiciary.
US Expresses Concern of the Charges Against Mr. Saakashvili
In a press statement in Washington DC, State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said the United States is concerned by the filing of criminal charges against former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili.
She highlighted that commitment to the rule of law means both that everyone must comply with the law in a democratic society and that the legal system should not be used as a tool of political retribution.
Currently, the US is monitoring this and related cases closely, and continue to stress to Georgian officials the importance of rigorous adherence to due process and the rule of law.
Georgia’s judiciary has been known for harsh sentences, a lack of bail and what they called an excessive use of detention.