The Special Penitentiary Service of Georgia published a statement regarding Mikheil Saakashvili’s accusations (see page 4).
“The statement of the accused / convict Mikheil Saakashvili, that the administration of the institution does not allow him to meet with lawyers, is a lie and is an attempt to mislead the public. We clarify that Mikheil Saakashvili enjoys all the rights granted to the accused / convict under the legislation of Georgia, including the right to legal aid provided for in the first part of Article 18 of the Imprisonment Code, from the day he was placed in the facility. The visits to Mikheil Saakashvili confirm this. As of today, 104 visits have been made to him, and he has met with lawyers 57 times. Among them, a meeting with one of his lawyers took place today.
As for the renewal of the glass barrier in the meeting room, this decision is due only to Mikheil Saakashvili and his lawyers violating the existing regulations in place due to the covid pandemia. In particular, there was regular violation of the rules by Mikheil Saakashvili and his lawyers involving direct contact over the top of the glass barrier by their climbing on the table. Mikheil Saakashvili’s refusal to use personal protection means (a facemask) increased the likelihood of the virus spreading. There was also a risk of damage to the glass barrier, which could have resulted in injury to one or both,” the statement reads.
They also mentioned that Mikheil Saakashvili has never had a problem exchanging documents with a lawyer, and with the help of the administration of the institution, he can still enjoy this right.
The statement also said that lawyers are aware of the fact that they will be able to meet with their clients only in case of a negative answer to a PCR test conducted during the last 72 hours, which was not done by any of the lawyers of the accused/convicted Mikheil Saakashvili.