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Mikheil Saakashvili, Ex-President of Georgia, Arrested in Ukraine, Again

Mikheil Saakashvili, Ex-President of Georgia, Arrested in Ukraine, Again

His court hearing is supposed to be held on Monday.

Saakashvili was left stateless, but he returned to Ukraine in September, boldly barging across the border with Poland aided by a crowd of supporters.

The ousted committee head, Yegor Sobolev, said: "The former and present corrupt elite have colluded".

Nika Melia, Chairman of UNM's Political Council, who addressed the rally first, told the protesters that the party and its leader were engaged in "a struggle for better future, for freedom and for maintaining independence".

Action by parliament and prosecutors against existing anti-corruption institutions such as the NABU investigative bureau also provoked a wave of criticism this week from reformists in Ukraine and its foreign backers, including the International Monetary Fund.

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Mr Saakashvili said the recordings were fake.

On Friday Poroshenko said he would soon introduce a draft law to set up such a court, taking into account recommendations by the Venice Commission, a leading European rights watchdog.

The vote Thursday comes after this week's attempts to arrest former Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili, who has become a high-profile anti-corruption campaigner in Ukraine.

"The effectiveness of the work of anti-corruption bodies should not be in the number of press conferences (they give), but in the number of corrupt officials who are put behind bars", he added. Saakashvili denies the charges against him.

Yuriy Lutsenko, Ukraine's prosecutor general, said in a Facebook post that Mr. Saakashvili, the standard-bearer of a vociferous campaign to remove the president of Ukraine, Petro O. Poroshenko, had been seized late Friday by police officers in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, and placed in a pretrial detention center.

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