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Saakashvili to stop hunger strike after being transferred to military hospital — attorney

During a meeting with his attorney on Thursday, Saakashvili fainted and fell over

TBILISI, November 19. /TASS/. Georgia’s former President Mikhail Saakashvili is ready to stop his hunger strike immediately after being transferred from the prison hospital to a military clinic in the city of Gori, Saakashvili’s attorney Nika Gvaravia said on Friday.

"He (Saakashvili - TASS) is ready to be transferred to a Gori hospital and stop the hunger strike immediately after the transfer," he said after seeing Saakashvili.

According to the attorney, Saakashvili will be transferred to the military hospital tonight but refused to say when exactly at the request of Georgia’s penitentiary authorities.

Georgia’s Justice Minister Rati Bregadze said earlier in the day that the authorities were ready to transfer Saakashvili to a military hospital in Gori but the patient’s consent was needed for that. Later, lawmaker Ekaterina Kherkheulidze said after visiting Saakashvili in hospital that he was not against the transfer.

During a meeting with his attorney on Thursday, Saakashvili fainted and fell over. A prison hospital doctor said later that his condition had been stabilized. However, Saakashvili is still in an intensive care ward.

Saakashvili was detained in Georgia on October 1 after his return to the country shortly ahead of the first round of municipal elections. He is currently being kept in prison in the city of Rustavi, where he went on a hunger strike as he claims to be a political prisoner. On November 8, Georgia’s Justice Ministry transferred the politician to a prison hospital on the outskirts of Tbilisi, but Saakashvili and his lawyers opposed it firmly and insisted that he should go to a private hospital.

Saakashvili was Georgia’s president from January 2004 to November 2013 and left the country several days before the expiration of his office term. Immediately after it, four criminal cases were initiated against him and verdicts were pronounced on two of them. On October 20, he was charged with illegal border crossing, which may entail imprisonment of up to five years. Recently, Saakashvili, has been living in Ukraine, where he holds citizenship.