Jailed ex-President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili said today he has heeded the calls of Georgian volunteers in Ukraine and Ukrainian commanders to call off his nearly 20-day-long second hunger strike.
“Now we need common sense, health and full mobilization, strength instead of weakness,” the ex-President stated in a Facebook post.
“Now we need not be weakened, but to gather strength, which will soon be very useful to us,” the ex-President argued, adding “this applies to me too.”
“The world is changing in front of our eyes,” Saakashvili said, arguing that “the Russian empire is its last gasps” during the war against Ukraine.
“The heroic Ukrainian people, led by Commander-in-Chief Volodymyr Zelenskyy, are wining this epochal war,” he stressed.
Against this backdrop, the ex-President said “we need unity and preparation, as never before.” He stressed that “the way to the peaceful return of Sokhumi passes through Kyiv, the liberation and prosperity of Georgia passes through Kyiv.”
The former Georgian President announced a “permanent hunger strike” on February 21, demanding to receive medical treatment for diseases he developed during his initial 50-day-long hunger strike.
Saakashvili ended his first hunger strike on November 19, 2021, after the Georgian Government agreed to transfer him to the Gori military clinic following a lengthy standoff. The ex-President was discharged from the hospital on December 30, 2021.
He had kicked off the strike immediately after his arrest on October 1, 2021, on the eve of local elections, following his unexpected return to Georgia from self-imposed exile in Ukraine.
The former President is serving a six-year prison term after he was sentenced in absentia in 2018 on two separate abuse of power charges – three years for pardoning the former Interior Ministry officials, convicted in the high-profile murder case of Sandro Girgvliani, and six years for organizing an attack on opposition MP Valeri Gelashvili.
Saakashvili denies all the charges as politically motivated.