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Saakashvili's Governorship in Ukraine Slap to Georgians - Politician

© AFP 2023 / IRAKLI GEDENIDZEGeorgian presidential candidate Nino Burjanadze exits a voting booth at a polling station during Georgia's presidential election in Tbilisi on October 27, 2013
Georgian presidential candidate Nino Burjanadze exits a voting booth at a polling station during Georgia's presidential election in Tbilisi on October 27, 2013 - Sputnik International
Nino Burjanadze, a Georgian opposition leader, called the appointment of former President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili as a governor of Ukraine's Odessa region "a slap in the face of the government of Georgia and of the Georgian people."

Activists in the city of Ukrainian port city of Odessa are continuing their protest campaign against newly appointed Governor Mikheil Saakashvili, this time launching a giant red balloon featuring his image and the phrase 'Mishko Go Home!', complete with a large red necktie dangling from his mouth. Photo: Saakashvili chewing on his tie as he waits for an interview with the BBC. - Sputnik International
Odessa Activists Launch Saakashvili Balloon, Complete With Famous Necktie
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The appointment of former President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili as a governor of Ukraine's Odessa region is a slap in the face of the Georgian people, Nino Burjanadze, a Georgian opposition leader said Saturday.

Saakashvili, a fugitive from prosecution in his homeland Georgia, was granted Ukrainian citizenship and appointed the governor of the Odessa Region in May.

"This motion by [President of Ukraine Petro] Poroshenko is just a slap in the face of the government of Georgia and of the Georgian people, because it is not called a friendship, when Georgia issues a wanted notice, blames him while you appoint such a person to high positions and present him as a model, or, I don't know, the father of democracy," Burjanadze, the leader of Georgia's Democratic Movement — United Georgia political party, told Rossiya-1 TV channel.

The former parliament speaker and leader of the 2003 Rose Revolution that brought Saakashvili to power added that she does not know a historical precedent in which a former president of a sovereign state agrees to be a regional governor in another country.

Protests in Odessa - Sputnik International
'Saakashvili Go Home!' Odessa Activists Demand Governor's Dismissal
She added that the appointment of Saakashvili will come at a very high price for Ukraine.

"His main objective is not to extinguish the fire, which is now, unfortunately, there in Ukraine, but, on the contrary, to add fuel to the fire, to further escalate relations with Russia," the politician pointed out.

Saakashvili served as Georgia's president from 2004-2013. He left for the Unites States just days before his presidential term expired, and has not lived in Georgia since.

In spring 2014, Georgia accused Saakashvili of embezzling immense sums from the state budget, and initiated an official investigation. The former president has denied the charges.

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