22:58 GMT +320 May 2018
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    Georgia Possibly to Seek Ex-President Saakashvili’s Extradition From US

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    Georgia may request extradition of its former President Mikheil Saakashvili from the United States, the country’s Justice Minister Tea Tsulukiani said on Monday.

    TBILISI (Sputnik) — Saakashvili was stripped of Ukrainian citizenship on Wednesday and is currently in the United States. He announced his intention to return to Ukraine at the earliest opportunity.

    "If its Ukraine, where he promised to return, we have exhausted all procedures in that direction. So if Ukraine obtains political will, the country will be able to decide on handing over Saakashvili. As for other countries, the United States for example, if the ex-president stays there, we will need legal consultations with the country, including talks and an agreement regarding extradition," Tsulukiani said, as broadcast by the Georgian Channel One.

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko revoked Saakashvili's Ukrainian citizenship on Wednesday, when it was discovered that the latter had violated Ukrainian law by providing incorrect information on his citizenship application.

    In November 2013, Saakashvili left Georgia as Giorgi Margvelashvili became the country's president. Georgian prosecution pressed criminal charges against Saakashvili in absentia, accusing him of embezzling immense sums from the state budget for personal use.

    In May 2015, Saakashvili was appointed governor of the Ukraine’s Odessa region on initiative of the country’s President Petro Poroshenko, and stripped of his Georgian citizenship upon receiving a Ukrainian passport. However, Saakashvili resigned in November 2016, stating that the Ukrainian authorities did not want to fight corruption. Poroshenko revoked his citizenship when it was discovered that Saakashvili had violated Ukrainian law by providing incorrect information on his citizenship application.

    Related:

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    Saakashvili Accuses Poroshenko of Aiming to Keep Corrupt Elite in Power
    Lithuanian EU Lawmaker Proposes to Grant Country's Citizenship to Saakashvili
    Tags:
    extradition, Tea Tsulukiani, Mikhail Saakashvili, United States, Ukraine, Georgia
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