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Saakashvili to the Rescue, or not

The following article by IWP alumnus Vilen Khlgatyan was published by the Political Developments Research Center.

Over the past decade Ukraine has undergone a series of economic and political setbacks. The 2004 Orange Revolution quickly turned into a fiasco that ushered in four years of utter cronyism, monopoly consolidation, and geopolitical mismanagement that was excessive even by Ukrainian standards. And now the situation has gone from bad to worse. Kiev is fighting and losing a war in its eastern provinces, facing bankruptcy, a negative growth economy, lacks prudent leadership, and is at present alienating a state that understands Ukraine’s predicament better than most.

Kiev’s appointment of former Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili as the head of Ukraine’s newly created International Advisory Council on Reforms has strained Georgian-Ukrainian ties. His task is to create proposals and recommendations for implementing reforms in Ukraine based on leading international practices. Since 2013 Saakashvili has been living in self-imposed exile in the United States. He faces arrest if he returns to Georgia.

In August of 2014, the Georgian Prosecutor-General’s Office requested an Interpol warrant for Saakashvilii’s arrest. The former president is facing several charges in his home country over his alleged abuse of power, the use of excessive force against protesters, embezzlement, and ordering politically motivated killings. Now that Saakashvili is in Ukraine, Tbilisi has asked for his extradition. Kiev has refused to comply.

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