PM: ex-Pres. Saakashvili’s family “spending millions on fake campaigns” against Gov’t

  • Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili answered a question on the imprisoned former President Mikheil Saakashvili while attending the panel discussion at the Qatar Economic Forum. Photo: Government press office, 24 May 2023 - 14:49, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on Wednesday told a panel discussion at the Qatar Economic Forum in Doha the family of the imprisoned former President Mikheil Saakashvili was “spending millions of dollars” on “fake campaigns” against the Government of the country. 

Garibashvili claimed the former official’s family had spent the funds to “raise fake accusations” of the Government “torturing and killing” Saakashvili in custody. 

The allegations follow a disclosure of the United States-based law firm Akerman in February, which showed it had received $917,177 from Saakashvili’s family to lobby the US Government to help free the former official following his arrest in Tbilisi in October 2021. 

Garibashvili also said Saakashvili’s family had even applied to the European Court of Human Rights with a motion to order his transfer to a foreign country on health grounds, and stressed the Court’s ruling on May 12 had “neither accepted the request for transfer, nor instructed the Georgian authorities to move Saakashvili to another treatment facility within [Georgia]”. 

The ruling reaffirmed the Georgian Government does care for Saakashvili’s health and treat him in line with European standards”, Garibashvili noted, telling the audience the former President had been receiving treatment in a Tbilisi clinic for more than a year. 

The head of the Government also told the audience while he had answered a moderator’s question on Saakashvili, he did not wish to speak about the former President, who he said was “in the past” for the country and made “big mistakes and committed grave crimes while in office”.