President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has returned Ukrainian citizenship to former head of the Odessa Regional State Administration Mikheil Saakashvili. He signed the relevant decree on May 28, = the presidential press service reports.
"In accordance with paragraph 26 of Article 106 of the Constitution of Ukraine and Articles 9, 22 of the Law of Ukraine "On Citizenship of Ukraine", I resolve…To add change to the Decree of the President of Ukraine No. 196 "On termination of Ukrainian citizenship to T. Bondarieva, O. Korniychuk, O. Korotetskyi and others" dated July 26, 2017, excluding provisions on the loss of Ukrainian citizenship by Mikheil SAAKASHVILI.
Saakashvili stated earlier that after the victory of Volodymyr Zelensky in the presidential election, he was seeking to return to Ukraine. On the day of the first round of the election, Zelensky did not object to the return of Saakashvili to Ukraine and said that he might need the help of the former president of Georgia. In 2015, Saakashvili received Ukrainian citizenship and was appointed to the post of chairman of the Odessa Regional State Administration by President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko. During his work, Saakashvili repeatedly criticized the Ukrainian authorities. He resigned in the fall of 2016. In late July 2017, Poroshenko signed a decree on the termination of the citizenship of Ukraine of Mikheil Saakashvili, reportedly, due to the conscious submission of false information when acquiring Ukrainian citizenship. On September 10, 2017, Saakashvili entered the territory of Ukraine without passing through border control.
On February 12, 2018, Mikheil Saakashvili was detained in one of the restaurants in the center of Kyiv, and then the State Border Guard Service and State Migration Service of Ukraine stated that he was returned to Poland by the readmission procedure, from where he arrived in September 2017 "violating the Ukrainian legislation". Saakashvili went to the Netherlands from Poland, - the report said.