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Georgia and Ukraine’s Saakashvili up in the Air

Mikheil Saakashvili arrived in Kiev in 2015 to accept Ukrainian citizenship and appointment as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region. Two years later, he finds himself in a stateless limbo. (Photo: Mikheil Saakashvili’s Facebook page)

Disowned first by Georgia and then Ukraine, the most famous revolutionary of the post-Soviet world, Mikheil Saakashvili, now finds himself in a stateless limbo.
 
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko revoked Saakashvili’s Ukrainian citizenship on Wednesday, making him surely one of very few figures in the world to have been both a senior political leader and then deprived of citizenship by two separate countries. Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili terminated Saakashvili’s Georgian citizenship in 2015, when the latter took Ukrainian citizenship upon his appointment, by Poroshenko, to the post of governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region.
 
In a bit of a poetic touch, the news of Saakashvili’s denaturalization appears to have hit while he was in the air, on his way to the United States and, it turns out, to an uncertain next stage in his peripatetic career. “He learned about it when he was in upstate New York, where he was visiting his uncle and his cousin,” said Saakashvili’s spokesperson, Zoé Reyners.  
 

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Giorgi Lomsadze is a freelance journalist and a frequent contributor to EurasiaNet.org's Tamada Tales blog.

Georgia and Ukraine’s Saakashvili up in the Air

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