KIEV, May 28./TASS/. Ex-President of Georgia and former Governor of Ukraine’s Odessa Region Mikhail Saakashvili has pledged to support reforms of President Vladimir Zelensky and give up personal political projects after he returns to Ukraine.
It is now time "to make moves to launch reforms, as we have a talented young president and his young team," said Saakashavili who returns to Ukraine on Wednesday after President Vladimir Zelensky reinstated his Ukrainian citizenship.
He expressed readiness "to consult the new establishment that is now being formed in Ukraine, and stressed that he had "no personal political ambitions". "We must not miss a chance given to us as a result of the presidential election in Ukraine," he told Nash TV.
Saakashvili’s former spokesperson Darina Chizh said on Facebook that he would arrive in Kiev from Warsaw at 17:15 local time on Wednesday.
After being stripped of the Ukrainian and Georgian citizenships, Saakashvili received residence permit in the Netherlands, where his wife is a national.
Mikhail Saakashvili had served two inconsecutive terms as Georgia’s head of state, from January 2004 to November 2007 and from January 2008 to mid-November 2013. In May 2015, Saakashvili was granted Ukrainian citizenship, which resulted in his Georgian citizenship being terminated by a Georgian presidential decision. He then served as Odessa Regional Governor, but later stepped down. In July 2017, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko stripped him of his Ukrainian citizenship amid a political fallout and under the pretext of Saakashvili knowingly giving false information to obtain citizenship, In February 2018, the Ukrainian authorities expelled him to Poland.
The Ukrainian State Border Service banned Saakashvili from entering the country until 2021. However, he pledged that he would never stop trying to return to Ukraine.
Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has restored Ukrainian citizenship of Mikhail Saakashvili, a decree published on the presidential website said on Tuesday.