Opposition vow 'mass hunger strike' until Saakashvili is released
Thousands marched in Tbilisi demanding the release of jailed opposition leader Mikheil Saakashvili.
It also spurred the largest anti-government protests in a decade.
In a message to supporters that was read out at the rally by Saakashvili's mother, Giuli Alasania, the former leader called for national unity and peaceful mass protests to pressure authorities to hold snap parliamentary polls.
"We are in vital need of free media, impartial judiciary, fair elections.
We need freedom here and now, and for good.".
"Changing the current regime is an essential pre-condition for the fulfilment of our Western aspirations," Saakashvili went on, referring to the ruling Georgian Dream party founded by the powerful oligarch Bidzina Ivanishvili.
Human rights group Amnesty International has branded Saakashvili's treatment "not just selective justice but apparent political revenge".