Irakli Kadagishvili, the Chair of the Rules and Procedural Issues Committee of the Parliament of Georgia, on Thursday said “all international organisations” should call on the imprisoned former President Mikheil Saakashvili to “abandon the policy of self-harm” in detention.
Kadagishvili was commenting on the joint statement of international human rights organisations Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, who on Thursday said “imprisonment should not mean a death sentence and the Georgian authorities should consider releasing Mikheil Saakashvili on medical grounds”.
The Parliament official noted the imprisoned politician’s medical treatment had been “fully ensured” by the Georgian authorities.
The only thing that probably all international organisations should do is call upon Mikheil Saakashvili to stop flagrantly violating the law and pursuing a policy of self-harm”, Kadagishvili said.
“His treatment and a normal state of health depends solely on whether he stops self-harm procedures and receives the standard calories that a person needs for basic normal functioning”, he noted.
Georgian Justice Minister Rati Bregadze on Tuesday rejected the accusations of “torture and inhumane treatment” of Saakashvili as “not supported by evidence”, claiming the allegations were a “part of political agenda”.
Tbilisi City Court in February rejected claims of Saakashvili’s legal team on his alleged need for “urgent treatment abroad due to multiple and serious health problems”. Georgian Government members and penitentiary authorities have also been challenging the claims by saying the former President has been engaged in “self-harm through disobeying doctors”, in a bid to facilitate his “illegal release” from detention.
Saakashvili, who has Ukrainian citizenship and held a public post in the country, was arrested on return to Georgia in October 2021 and is serving a six-year term for abuse of power in a case he had been convicted on. He has been undergoing treatment in the Vivamedi civilian clinic in Tbilisi since May 2022, with three other cases against him pending.