Ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili said his summoning by Georgian prosecutors for questioning is part of “Ivanishvili-Putin game” and he’s not going to make “Putin’s dreams come true” by arriving in Tbilisi for interrogation.
He told Rustavi 2 TV that he left Georgia after his second and final presidential term expired last year upon advice from unnamed senior U.S. and EU officials. Saakashvili said that he was told by a senior EU official that it was “a direct order from Putin to arrest me.” He also said that he decided to temporarily leave Georgia in order to save Georgia’s “reputation” as his arrest would have “killed” Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic integration.
Saakashvili said that attempts to target him “accelerated” because of his active campaigning on international stage in support of Ukraine.
“I was actually the first to start a campaign in support of Ukraine,” said Saakashvili, who according to Rustavi 2 TV was speaking from Terneuzen, Netherlands.
“As it seems in recent weeks I have been stuck in Vladimir Putin’s throat,” he said.
“We have created many problems [to Russian leadership], my friends and I contributed to imposing [Western] sanctions,” Saakashvili said, adding that his international trips are a "huge problem for Putin.”
“But if Putin thinks that I will go and quietly surrender of course that’s nonsense,” he said. “I am going to continue struggle for liberation of Georgia and the entire region as a free person. No one will be able to restrict my movement.”
“As far as your question about arrival to Georgia is concerned – I will arrive in Georgia not in order to make Putin’s dream come true, but to liberate Georgia from executors of Putin’s instructions. This time will come much sooner than Ivanishvili can imagine it – the Russian oligarch, who has been given two billions for implementing this task.”
“Nothing will stop me, except of being physically liquidated by Putin,” Saakashvili said. “I am going to continue my struggle as a free man and I am not going to play Ivanishvili-Putin games.”