Georgian ambassador leaves Ukraine over Saakashvili situation
Giorgi Zakarashvili (Photo: Facebook)

Georgian Ambassador to Ukraine Giorgi Zakarashvili has left Kyiv, Georgian outlet Interpressnews was told by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia.

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"Giorgi Zakarashvili was forced to leave Kyiv by the decision of the President of Ukraine," the statement says.

According to the decision, the ambassador must leave Kyiv and return to Tbilisi for consultations in connection with the situation around Ukrainian citizen and former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who is being held in prison and whom Tbilisi refuses to transfer to other countries for treatment.

On June 3, 2023, Saakashvili joined a court hearing in Tbilisi via video link from the clinic and said that he keeps losing weight. A screenshot was published showing Saakashvili looking like a "living skeleton".

On the same day, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy instructed the Foreign Ministry to express a "strong" protest to the Georgian ambassador to Ukraine.

The Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that the Georgian authorities deserved a tough reaction from Ukraine because of their treatment of Saakashvili.

On July 4, the Foreign Ministry summoned Georgian Ambassador Zakarashvili and conveyed a strong protest over Saakashvili's condition.