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Chief Prosecutor to do his best to put Saakashvili on the Interpol wanted list

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, December 30
Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor Giorgi Badashvili said that he will do his best to convince Interpol to issue a ‘red notice’ and put former President Mikheil Saakashvili on its wanted list.

“We have addressed Interpol’s General Secretariat, asking it to put Saakashvili on the wanted list. All the cases Saakashvili is charged with will be sent to the institution in the near future,” Badashvili said.

Interpol uses red notices to notify its member states that an arrest warrant has been issued for an individual. But Interpol cannot demand individual nations make an arrest based on issued red notices.

In July of 2014, Saakashvili was charged with exceeding official authority in connection with the breakup of anti-government protests on November 7, 2007 and a raid on Imedi TV. The court ordered pre-trial detention for Saakashvili in absentia on August 2, 2014 in connection to these charges.

According to Badashvili, a special department will be created within the Prosecutor’s Office in 2015 that will work on such cases. According to him thousands of suits had been brought in the body after the 2012 parliamentary elections concerning the illegal seizure of property by former officials.

Badashvili touched upon famous cases, including the late Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania and Sandro Girgvliani’s case.

According to the investigation conducted by the previous government, Zhvania died due to carbon monoxide poisoning in 2005. However, Zhvania’s family states he was murdered. Badashvili suggested that many new important details have been revealed in the investigation launched under the new government, but he refrained from providing additional information before the investigation in over.

The Chief Prosecutor stated that the reinvestigation of Girgvliani’s case, who was kidnapped and found dead in 2006 after his incident with former officials at a Sharden Bar, was also complicated, as not unlike Zhvania’s case, too much time passed from the fact and much evidence was deliberately destroyed.

Badashvili excluded any political interference in the Prosecutor’s Office activities and dismissed the statements concerning the political persecution of former officials.

In response, the opposition United National Movement states that the Chief Prosecutor’s Office follows the demands of the government. They stress that the cases launched against the previous government member are obviously political persecution and the statements made by various international organizations prove this.