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Estonia, Sweden ‘Concerned’ about Gigi Ugulava’s Imprisonment

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On February 12, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia and Swedish Foreign Minister have released statements on Georgian Supreme Court’s ruling that sent opposition European Georgia leader Gigi Ugulava to prison for three years and two months.

Estonian Foreign Ministry tweeted that it is “following the ruling against Gigi Ugulava with concern.” It further added that “the circumstances around this verdict are not conducive to advancing the political dialogue aimed at a much needed depolarisation of the political situation in Georgia.”

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde also commented on Ugulava’s verdict, noting that “Sweden shares EU concerns about circumstances around the Ugulava case.” “As a close friend of Georgia we call for steps to narrow divisions and uphold the highest standards of democracy and rule of law,” Minister Linde tweeted.

In a statement released earlier today, Peter Stano, Lead Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy said that the European Union is “scrutinizing closely” the recent Supreme Court ruling.

On February 10, a three-member panel of the Supreme Court found Ugulava guilty of misspending GEL 48 million (USD 17 million) of public money from Tbilisi Development Fund, while serving as the mayor of the capital city, and sentenced him to three years and two months in jail.

Two of the judicial panel members Shalva Tadumadze (former Prosecutor General) and Merab Gabinashvili – who were recently appointed as Supreme Court justices for lifetime tenure – supported the ruling, while judge Giorgi Shavliashvili dissented.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)

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