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The Latest: Saakashvili, Backers March in Ukraine's Capital

The Latest: Saakashvili, Backers March in Ukraine's Capital

Tuesday, 05 December 2017 07:38 AM

MOSCOW (AP) — The Latest on Mikheil Saakashvili's detention and escape from custody in Kiev (all times local):

3:10 p.m.

Several hundred protesters and opposition politician Mikheil Saakashvili are marching down the streets of the Ukrainian capital to the parliament to demand the president's resignation.

The former president of Georgia, who has emerged as an anti-corruption campaigner in Ukraine, earlier broke free from custody several hours after he was detained. Hundreds of protesters had been blocking the police van with Saakashvili inside during an hours-long standoff with police.

Saakashvili told his supporters that he would "lay down his life for the freedom of Ukraine" and called on the protesters to follow him to the parliament. He also called on Ukrainians to rally on Kiev's main square, the epicenter of the 2013-2014 protests, to demand the resignation of President Petro Poroshenko.

Saakashvili was wearing a flag with Ukraine's yellow and blue colors around his neck as he marched in central Kiev surrounded by supporters.

1:55 p.m.

The former president of Georgia who has emerged as an anti-corruption campaigner in Ukraine has broken free from custody, several hours after he was detained.

Ukrainian authorities detained Mikheil Saakashvili at his home on Tuesday morning but hundreds of protesters stopped the police van with Saakashvili inside from driving away.

More than three hours after the politician was detained, riot police were sent in to help but they failed to get the van moving.

Saakashavili then somehow managed to break free and addressed the crowd, calling for protests against President Petro Poroshenko.

Saakashvili left Georgia in 2013 after serving as president for nearly a decade, and later was appointed governor of Ukraine's Odessa region. But he quit in 2016, complaining that his efforts to root out corruption suffered official obstruction.

10:45 a.m.

Ukrainian police have detained the former president of Georgia who has emerged as an anti-corruption campaigner in his new country.

Police went to detain Mikheil Saakashvili Tuesday morning. He went up on the roof of his home in Kiev to protest, attracting a crowd of supporters downstairs. Footage from the scene showed Saakashvili being taken away while several hundred protesters were blocking the road.

Saakashvili left Georgia in 2013 after serving as president for nearly a decade, and later was appointed governor of Ukraine's Odessa region. But he quit in 2016, complaining that his efforts to root out corruption suffered official obstruction.

His Ukrainian citizenship was revoked this year while he was out of the country, but he returned in September after supporters broke through a police line at the Polish border.

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The Latest on Mikheil Saakashvili's detention and escape from custody in Kiev (all times local):3:10 p.m.Several hundred protesters and opposition politician Mikheil Saakashvili are marching down the streets of the Ukrainian capital to the parliament to demand the...
EU,Ukraine,Saakashvili,The Latest
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2017-38-05
Tuesday, 05 December 2017 07:38 AM
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