Georgian ex-premier Zurab Nogaideli and ex-defense minister Irakly Okruashvili said on Thursday they would come together to oppose President Mikheil Saakashvili.
“The opposition needs to come together,” a joint statement said. “The local elections on May 30 proved once more that Saakashvili and his regime strive only to preserve their power and in this fight they cynically use all the resources of our country.”
“A split opposition is incapable of resisting the current regime,” the statement went on.
Voting in the May 30 polls, the first elections since the disastrous August 2008 war with Russia, was seen as a test for Saakashvili and the ruling party.
The National Council bloc, including Nogaideli’s A Just Georgia party came fourth, while Okruashvili, who has political refugee status in France, boycotted the elections.
Okruashvili, once a key ally of Saakashvili, was arrested in Georgia in September 2007 on corruption charges. He was released soon after on $6 million bail and left for Germany.
His arrest, which came after he had publicly accused Saakashvili of ordering the murders of political opponents and of plotting to seize a breakaway region, sparked mass street protests in the capital, Tbilisi.
TBILISI, June 10 (RIA Novosti)