Tbilisi City Court accepted prosecution’s motion and ordered pre-trial detention of former President Mikheil Saakashvili in absentia,Civil.ge reported.
Preliminary court hearing – the stage when a presiding judge, among other issues, decides on the admissibility of evidence submitted by the parties – has been set for September 22.
Prosecutor’s office has charged Saakashvili with exceeding official powers in connection to break up of the anti-government protest rallies on November 7, 2007, and raid on and “seizure” of Imedi TV station.
“Ahead of the August war [six-year] anniversary Putin could not have imagined more desirable present than Georgian authorities ordering my arrest,” Saakashvili said in a video address from the US, released on August 1 before the court’s ruling was announced after midnight on Saturday.
“This will be one of the most shameful pages of Georgia’s history,” he said.
“I am not going to turn up upon summoning of prosecutor’s office, controlled by Gazprom shareholder [referring to Georgia’s ex-PM Bidzina Ivanishvili] – I will be very far whenever they summon me, but I will be very close when the Georgian people call me,” Saakashvili said.