PM Gakharia: ‘appointing wanted ex-president Saakashvili as vice PM in Ukraine unacceptable’

  • PM Giorgi Gakharia has responded to the possible appointment of former Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili in the Ukrainian government. Photo: government of Georgia press office., 24 Apr 2020 - 17:05, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia says that the possible appointment of former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili as vice PM for reforms in Ukraine by a strategic partner state is ‘absolutely unacceptable.’ 

However, Gakharia said that Ukraine and Georgia are allies and ‘nothing will harm our partnership in the long-term perspective.’ 

The appointment of Saakashvili in the Ukrainain government, who was sentenced in absentia in Georgia and has been wanted for several years, is absolutely unacceptable,” Gakharia said. 

Georgian Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze said that Saakashvili’s possible presence in the Ukrainian government may harm Georgian-Ukrainian cooperation. 

Saakashvili said on April 22 that the offer for the new post came from President Volodymyr Zelensky.

  • Saakashvili served as Georgia’s third president from 2004 to 2007 and again from 2008 to 2013.
  • He is accused of the violent dispersal of anti-government mass protests on November 7, 2007; unlawful raiding of Imedi television company by riot police and the illegal takeover of property owned by late media tycoon Badri (Arkadi) Patarkatsishvili.
  • Georgia has several times requested Saakashvili’s extradition from Ukraine.