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Ex-Georgia president Saakashvili jailed for three years in absence

A court in Georgia has sentenced the country's former president, Mikheil Saakashvili, in his absence to three years in prison for abusing his power in the pardoning of four policemen convicted of murdering a banker.

Saakashvili, who was president from 2004-13, left Georgia when his presidency ended and eventually went to Ukraine, where he had been appointed governor of the Odessa region.

He resigned in 2016 and harshly criticised President Petro Poroshenko.

Last year, the Ukrainian leader stripped Saakashvili of his citizenship while he was abroad.

Saakashvili returned to Ukraine in September and has led a series of protests against the government.

A court in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, sentenced Saakashvili on Friday.

Georgia has requested Saakashvili's extradition, but Ukraine has not complied.


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