The Twitter page @saakashvily, allegedly belonging to the former Georgian president and newly-appointed head of the Odesa State Administration, Mikheil Saakashvili, has turned out to be a fake.

It was registered in 2012, but was only activated immediately after Saakashvili was appointed to the new position in Ukraine. In two days @saakashvily gathered almost 9,000 followers and achieved a top-6 position among Russian-speaking Twitter pages. Major Russian and Ukrainian news agencies – including Russia Today, REN-TV, RBK-Ukraine, Rosbalt, RIA Novosti, Echo Moskva, TSN, Gazeta.ru, Censor, and Dumskaya – began reposting its tweets. However, almost all Ukrainian media have already deleted the fake news from their sites that resulted.

russian.rt.com website screenshot

russian.rt.com website screenshot

Ren.tv website screenshot

Ren.tv website screenshot

rbc.ua website screenshot

rbc.ua website screenshot

Mikheil Saakashvili has only one official Twitter page @SaakashviliM; and the person who set the bogus account up has already confirmed on his Facebook page that his account has nothing to do with Saakashvili.

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A number of false stories evolved from the fake Twitter page, including reports about Saakashvili reducing the number of state administrative employees, placing a box in the capital building for peoples’ requests, and cutting jobs to pay for repatriating his family to Odesa.