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The Minister of Justice Welcomes European Court's Decision on Saakashvili's Case

By Liza Mchedlidze
Friday, May 24, 2024
Minister of Justice Rati Bregadze responded to the decision of the Strasbourg Court on the case "Saakashvili v. Georgia" at a briefing. Bregadze assessed the decision of the European Court, stating, "The Georgian state has won completely".

According to the Minister of Justice, Saakashvili is serving a six-year prison sentence for the cases involving the severe beating of Valery Gelashvili and pardoning the killers of Girgvliani, as per the verdict of the Georgian court.

"The convict disagreed with the decision of the Georgian court and argued in Strasbourg about the bias of the judge, insufficient evidence, and political persecution," Bregadze said.

Saakashvili additionally stated that he was sentenced for something which represented the discretionary right of the president, and this could not become the basis of criminal liability.

"The European Court refused Saakashvili's requests on all these grounds. The court fully supported the government's legal position with the evidence provided and found that the investigation, prosecution, and conviction of Saakashvili in the cases of Girgvliani and Gelashvili are fully compliant with the standards of the European Convention. The judge's impartiality is not in doubt, and in both cases, there was a combination of credible, clear, and well-substantiated evidence that proves his commission of crimes," Justice Minister said.

According to Rati Bregadze, the court proceedings were fair, and the conviction was well-founded. Additionally, the minister stated that the European Court also supported the Georgian government's position, asserting that the president's right to pardon does not represent absolute discretion, and its misuse may be punishable under criminal law.

"Regarding Saakashvili's claims of political persecution," the Strasbourg court deemed this charge inadmissible and did not see the need to review it," Bregadze noted.