Georgia: trial of former president Mikhail Saakashvili opens in Tbilisi

President Mikhail Saakashvili at the opening of his trial in Tbilisi on November 29, 2021. AP - Irakli Gedenidze

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In Georgia, the trial of Mikhail Saakachvili began this Monday, November 29 in Tbilisi.

The former Georgian president returned to his country after eight years in exile is appearing on charges of abuse of power which he disputes, denouncing a "

political trial 

" which began in the early hours in a context of very great voltage.

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Several hundred supporters of the former president demonstrated on Monday morning in front of the court where the trial is taking place, and dozens of them were arrested by the police. 

Mikhail Saakashvili's supporters denounce trumped up accusations and a political trial intended to keep the former president in detention.

Already sentenced in absentia to six years in prison for abuse of power, Mikhail Saakashvili

has been facing

other procedures

since his return from exile

The trial which opened on Monday concerns the very violent repression of demonstrations which took place in 2007. Then in power the former president had resigned and called new elections in the wake denying any responsibility for the police violence.

The opposition leader was jailed upon his return from exile last October, and went on

a 50-day hunger strike

.

"

I am not afraid to appear in court and defend my truth,

 " he said last week on social networks while adding "to 

have no chance of finding justice in court

 ".

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  • Georgia

  • Mikheil Saakashvili

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