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Detention of Saakashvili an unlikely scenario

By Messenger Staff
Friday, August 1
Georgia’s new government has filed charges against the former President Mikheil Saakashvili in absentia. This is a decisive step taken by the Georgian Dream government to fulfill one of its crucial promises given to the people concerning the restoration of justice. The opposition United National Movement meanwhile claims it is political persecution.

Saakashvili was initially summoned to the Prosecutor’s Office as a witness, regarding the brutal dispersal of a peaceful demonstration in November of 2007 and for an illegal police raid of Imedi TV, as well as the illegal seizure of the property belonging to now deceased businessman Badri Patrakatsishvili.

If it is determined that Saakashvili is guilty of these charges, he would be sentenced to stay in prison for 5-8 years. However, the Prosecutor’s Office states that there are other crimes committed by Saakashvili and the prison term might be increased.

Saakashvili is being charged in two notorious cases: the rally dispersal and the appropriation of private property. The international community had condemned both of the cases when they took place. However, now that Saakashvili’s arrest in on the agenda, they have expressed their concern in terms of his detention. Such action from the certain politicians in the West and the United States illustrate double standards and ignore the rule of law that is so often supported and discussed by them.

There are some other facts which might be used against Saakashvili and his team as well. One of the most important is the August 2008 War with Russia, which resulted in the loss of life, the loss of sovereign territory and thousands of refugees.

This is one of the most tragic pages of Saakashvili’s presidency.

There is also the case of Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania’s mysterious death.

The government has repeatedly stressed that nobody is above the law and provide examples of when Western high-ranking politicians were held accountable for their crimes. Of course, the Georgian Dream administration claims that this is not political revenge, but simply the restoration of justice.

However, the UNM claims that all the charges are just allegations targeted against the opposition.

Most analysts agree that even if Saakashvili is put on the Interpol wanted list, he will not be detained and extradited to Georgia. Most probably Saakashvili will ask for political asylum from a country sympathetic to his cause.

Saakashvili has thus far not requested asylum. He is currently enjoying serious support from the West due to his critical stance towards Russia and its leaders. Saakashvili’s anti-Russian policy in the context of the Ukrainian developments is appreciated by West.

All in all, if Georgia’s government wants to convince the world community in Saakashvili’s wrongdoing, it should produce solid, serious and well grounded evidences of this. It must provide the world community indisputable evidence that Saakashvili is guilty.