Georgia keeps former leader Saakashvili locked up

Georgia keeps former leader Saakashvili locked up
Опубликовано: Thursday, 02 March 2023 13:05

Tbilisi court says there was ‘no legal basis for the appeal.’

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili will remain in custody, a Tbilisi appeals court ruled Thursday in a move set to further endanger the country’s prospects of joining the European Union.

Last month, his request to be released on health grounds was denied by a lower court — but the former Georgian leader had appealed the decision.

“After examining the materials [and] information presented in the case, it was considered there was no legal basis for the appeal,” the Tbilisi Court of Appeals said in a statement.

Saakashvili has been in detention since October 2021 on abuse of power charges, which he claims are politically motivated. Since then, there have been widespread reports of his rapidly declining health.

On several occasions, the former pro-Western leader — who is reportedly being poisoned in detention — looked gaunt and emaciated, including in video appearances before the court handling his case over the last few weeks.

The Georgian government, led by Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, is facing increasing diplomatic pressure to address Saakashvili’s medical condition.

In February, the European Parliament warned in a resolution that the Georgian authorities’ “continuing failure” to act would “hamper [Georgia’s] European Union candidacy prospects.”

The text singled out Bidzina Ivanishvili, an oligarch and former prime minister who made his fortune in Russia in the 1990s, as being responsible for Saakashvili’s continued detention “as part of a personal vendetta” against the former president.

Georgia applied for EU membership last March, but was not granted candidate status, and will have to implement several reforms first — including strengthening the independence of the country’s judiciary.

Related items

EU remembers the optimism of 20 years ago, when 10 countries joined

Thursday, 02 May 2024 05:08

The 20 years since 10 new membe

Thailand’s Positive Strides: Political Reform and Democratic Progress

Friday, 26 April 2024 12:33

Thailand has long been admired

France passes new anti-cult law against Senate’s opposition

Saturday, 13 April 2024 20:08

The law creates a new crime of

The state of Human Rights for Minorities in China

Tuesday, 19 March 2024 09:50

China Society for Human Rights

Enlargement: Representatives from EU candidate countries will now join the work of the EESC

Friday, 16 February 2024 07:03

The European Economic and Socia