Treatment stores

Jailed Georgia ex-president moved to clinic for treatment

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who was convicted in absentia of abusing power during his presidency and arrested upon his return from exile, reacts in the dock during a hearing in Tbilisi, Georgia, on 2 December 2021. REUTERS/Irakli Gedenidze/ Pool/File Photo

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TBILISI, May 12 (Reuters) – Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili was transferred to a private medical facility for treatment on Thursday after his health deteriorated significantly in prison following two hunger strikes.

A lawyer for Saakashvili said his legal team knew he had been transferred to a clinic in the capital Tbilisi, but said they had received no information about his condition from the prison service.

The 54-year-old was arrested in October last year on his return to Georgia after years of exile to rally opposition on the eve of local elections.

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Saakashvili, who implemented pro-Western reforms for nearly a decade in power, was accused in absentia in 2018 of abusing office during his presidency, charges he rejects as politically motivated.

In written responses to Reuters questions last month, Saakashvili said he was seeking “urgent medical help” for what he said was ill-treatment in prison, which Georgian authorities have denied. Read more

Saakashvili said his time in prison left him with a “severe neurological condition”.

The former president’s family and supporters have urged authorities to allow him to travel abroad for treatment.

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Reuters reporting

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