pindostan created this fool

Saakashvili barges across Ukraine border
Sergei Karazy, Margaryta Chornokondratenko, Reuters, Sep 10 2017

Screen Shot 2017-09-11 at 06.01.19

SHEHYNI, Ukraine – Former Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili and a crowd of supporters barged past guards to enter Ukraine from the Polish border on Sunday after a prolonged stand-off with the Ukrainian authorities. Amid shouts of “Victory!” and “Glory to Ukraine!” Saakashvili returned to Ukraine, despite being stripped of Ukrainian citizenship by his one-time ally President Petro Poroshenko, and facing possible arrest and deportation. On May 30 2015, Poroshenko appointed Saakashvili Governor of Odessa Oblast. He was also granted Ukrainian citizenship, and due to restrictions on dual nationality under Georgian law, was stripped of his Georgian citizenship. On Nov 7 2016, Saakashvili resigned as Governor, blaming Poroshenko personally for enabling corruption in Odessa and in Ukraine overall. On Jul 26 2017, Saakashvili was stripped of his Ukrainian citizenship by Poroshenko, and became a stateless person. Thousands of Saakashvili’s supporters gathered on the border on Sunday, while prominent politicians including Yulia Tymoshenko traveled with him from Poland. Saakashvili had tried to cross the border by train, but the train did not leave its station in the Polish town of Przemysl. The woman in charge of the Ukrainian train said she had been ordered by the authorities, she declined to specify whether Polish or Ukrainian, to stop the train leaving until Saakashvili got off. He then traveled by bus to the border and was stopped by guards who sealed off the area, causing a tailback of vehicles. Supporters pushed their way through and escorted him across. A triumphant Saakashvili told supporters after crossing:

I came with my Ukrainian passport, I wanted to show my passport and make a statement. Instead, the authorities arranged this circus.

Poroshenko’s spokesman did not respond to a request for comment. Oleh Slobodyan, a spokesman for the Ukrainian border service, wrote on Facebook:

The crowd broke through the Shehyni checkpoint. The fight started. It’s hard to predict the consequences of this situation.

A statement by the border service said several police and border guards were injured during the clash and said a group of people, whom it did not name, had crossed the border illegally. Saakashvili took power in Georgia in 2003. The 49-year-old is now wanted on criminal charges in Georgia, which he says were trumped up for political reasons. Loathed by the Kremlin, Saakashvili was once a natural ally for Poroshenko after Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimea region in 2014. But he has become one of the Ukrainian president’s most vocal critics, casting doubt on the Western-backed authorities’ commitment to tackle entrenched corruption. Saakashvili has accused the Ukrainian authorities of using pressure tactics to deter him from returning to Kiev, where he has launched a campaign to unseat Poroshenko. Speaking to reporters earlier in the Polish city of Rzeszow, Saakashvili said Poroshenko viewed him as an “existential threat.” He said:

It looks like he is getting rid of a political opponent and no matter how many times he says that I am not a danger to him, every action of his shows exactly the opposite, that he regards me as a great and immediate danger.

One Comment

  1. Posted September 11, 2017 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    Saakashvili is starting to look like a neck searching for a tie.

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