Saakashvili accuses Ukrainian President Poroshenko of impeding the implementation of reforms in Odessa region

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili wrote on his Facebook page that President Petro Poroshenko hindered the implementation of reforms in Odessa Oblast, and that the Ukrainian people would definitely not elect him for a second term.

"Today Petro Poroshenko touched upon the issue of me at his press conference. He said that he invited me to Odessa and gave me opportunities, and that I betrayed his trust. The president, to put it lightly, told a lie. He invited me as a combat general would be invited to fight at the front, and then [treated as if] they wanted him to become a ceremonial bystander and give toasts. He invited me for PR, to show off in front of Ukrainians and foreigners," Saakashvili said.

According to the former Georgian President, Poroshenko blocked all of his initiatives in Odessa Oblast.

"He personally blocked the law on the open customs area…so as not to allow the completion of the transformation at the Odessa customs…He [also] came to an agreement with [Odessa Mayor Gennadiy] Trukhanov to give all possible support the opposition against me," he said.

Saakashvili stressed that between the conflict between him and Poroshenko is not of a personal nature, but rather a "conflict of outlook."

"For him, the Presidency is an opportunity to earn extra billions and consolidate his clan. For me, it was an opportunity to serve the people, to improve their lives. Corruption lives in his Cabinet; it’s in his head. To demand that he fight corruption is like trying to persuade a bee not to like honey," the politician said.

He admitted that, if there was a mistake on his part, it would be that he had not left his post as head of Odessa Regional State Administration earlier, even though "after a while it was already obvious that our views, our principles, were very different."

"He said that everything relating to me [regarding my readmissions procedure] was done in accordance with the law. But you can’t lie so brazenly. Where, in what normal country, have you seen a person pulled by his hair, strangled in a helicopter that circled over the city for over two hours, not given an opportunity to defend himself in court, and deprived of his citizenship by forged signature, so that the president's personal security guards would [be able to] grab him, [rather than] some policemen and border guards? Where, in what normal legal state, is this possible? It is clear to everyone that all procedures were violated in relation to me [my case],” said Saakashvili.

He also responded to Poroshenko's remark that "I must be an unhappy person, because I have not realized myself."

"Petro Oleksiyovych, I have accomplished more than enough myself; I wrote myself into the history of the entire region through successful reforms in Georgia," Saakashvili said.
According to him, he intends to create a new Ukraine alongside his "true and sincere supporters and associates".

President Petro Poroshenko believes that the readmission procedures for former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to Poland were carried out without violations and within the law.

On February 12, the politician was detained in Kyiv and taken by plane to Warsaw. Saakashvili was received on the territory of Poland in accordance with the readmission application submitted by the National Migration Service of Ukraine.

  Mikheil Saakashvili, Poroshenko, Odessa, corruption in Ukraine