Former Georgian president and ex-Odesa region governor Mikheil Saakashvili has reportedly asked Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko to “de-escalate the situation” in Ukraine.
This emerged from Poroshenko’s press secretary Svyatoslav Tsegoloko’s Facebook post on December 19.
In a letter published by Tsegolko, Saakashvili addresses Poroshenko by his first name and patronymic (the official way to address someone in Ukraine). Saakashvili claims that Poroshenko knows him well enough to understand that accusing him of working for the FSB (Russia’s Federal Security Service) is “not only absurd but also pleasant for Ukraine’s enemy.”
“Dear Petro Oleksiyovych, Mr. President,
Despite all the recent events, I have no aggressive intentions. You know me well and understand that accusing me of working for the FSB is not only absurd but is pleasant for Ukraine’s enemy.
Of course, I used to and still do make political mistakes but now I know better than ever that the situation needs to de-escalate and stabilize.
I am happy to see the authorized representative anytime and discuss everything.
In a post that comes with the photograph of the letter, Tsegolko adds that he made the decision to publish the letter because of “numerous enquiries from journalists” and “comments by Saakashvili himself manipulating the content of the letter.”
Saakashvili currently stands accused in Ukraine of taking $500,000 from the pro-Russian businessman Serhiy Kurchenko who is now hiding in Russia. The politician denies these charges.
The recent events with Saakashvili are widely perceived in Ukraine as a conflict between the president and the Georgian-Ukrainian politician. In July 2017 Poroshenko stripped Saakashvili of his Ukrainian citizenship. A couple of months later, on September 10, after one unsuccessful attempt Saakashvili managed to cross the border with the help of his supporters.
Upon his return, Saakashvili, along with his Ukrainian “Movement of New Forces” political party organized a handful of anti-government protests calling for Poroshenko’s impeachment.
On December 5, law enforcers attempted to arrest Saakashvili but the politician was freed from the police car by his supporters. Later on the same day, the General Prosecutor’s office put the former Georgian president on the wanted list officially allowing the police to arrest him.
On December 8, Saakashvili was taken into custody by Ukraine’s Security Services but was released several days later after a judge rejected calls for the former Odesa Governor to be placed under house arrest.
/By Maria Romanenko