Former governor Mikheil Saakashvili 'forces entry' to Ukraine

2017/9/10 23:36:23

Saakashvili (centre) was surrounded by a large crowd at the border

From BBC News, Sep 10, 2017


Mikheil Saakashvili, the ex-president of Georgia and one-time governor in Ukraine, has crossed into Ukraine, helped by hundreds of his supporters.


Mr Saakashvili said he was unexpectedly swept over the border by a crowd, angry that the crossing was closed.


"They weren't stopped by the lies that there were explosives there. They swept us up and carried us into Ukraine."


But Ukrainian MP Ivan Krulko said the Ukrainian guards had allowed Mr Saakashvili to enter the country.


Mr Saakashvili, formerly Georgian, then Ukrainian, is now a stateless person, as his Ukrainian citizenship was stripped by his former ally, President Petro Poroshenko, after a falling out.


He is also wanted in Georgia on criminal charges, which he claims are politically motivated.


Earlier on Sunday, his train was held at a railway station in Przemysl, Poland, as Ukrainian border guards denied him entry.


Mr Saakashvili was joined by a number of his supporters, including former Ukrainian Prime Minister and current opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko.


He later told a pro-opposition TV station that the border authorities "provoked and provoked" people.


But he praised the Ukrainian police for not using violence.


Deportation threat


Mr Saakashvili, who was born in Georgia, has said he wants to return to his adopted Ukraine to contest President Poroshenko's decision to strip him of his citizenship, in July while he was out of the country.



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