Hundreds rally in Georgia to name for launch of jailed ex-president

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RUSTAVI, Georgia, Oct 4 (Reuters) – Hundreds of Georgians rallied on Monday to demand the discharge of hunger-striking ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, who was jailed final week after coming back from exile and calling for post-election protests.

Saakashvili, who was sentenced in absentia in Georgia in 2018 for abuse of energy and concealing proof when he was president – fees he known as politically motivated, secretly returned residence forward of final weekend’s municipal elections after years overseas. He was arrested on Friday.

It isn’t absolutely clear how the 53-year-old, pro-Western politician got here again however investigating prosecutors have charged two males for driving him from the Georgian port of Poti to a village on Sept. 29, Interfax information company reported.

Saakashvili plans to maintain up the starvation strike that he declared the night of his arrest till he’s freed, TASS information company cited his lawyer as saying.

Georgia’s president and authorities have made clear they don’t have any plan to pardon or launch him.

Some of his supporters from the United National Movement occasion that he based gathered outdoors the jail holding him within the city of Rustavi, southeast of the capital, on Monday.

They waved flags and chanted his nickname “Misha, Misha!”

The politician who led the Rose Revolution in 2003 that ended the presidency of Eduard Shevardnadze is a figurehead for some within the opposition, however derided as a clown by detractors within the ruling Georgian Dream occasion.

Georgian Dream gained 46.7% on the municipal elections over the weekend, in contrast with 30.7% for the occasion based by Saakashvili, in keeping with outcomes launched on Sunday with a lot of the votes counted. learn extra

Reporting by David Chkhikvishvili/Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; writing by Tom Balmforth; enhancing by Mark Heinrich

A prison guard is seen through flags held by supporters of Georgian ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, who called for post-election street protests an1d was arrested upon his arrival in Georgia despite facing imprisonment, during a rally near a jail in Rustavi, Georgia October 4, 2021. REUTERS/Irakli Gedenidze

Supporters of Georgian ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, who called for post-election street protests and was arrested upon his arrival in Georgia despite facing imprisonment, hold a rally near a jail in Rustavi, Georgia October 4, 2021. REUTERS/Irakli Gedenidze

A participant holds a Ukrainian flag during a rally held by supporters of Georgian ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, who called for post-election street protests and was arrested upon his arrival in Georgia despite facing imprisonment, near a jail in Rustavi, Georgia October 4, 2021. REUTERS/Irakli Gedenidze