The saga threatens to embarrass the pro-Western leadership in Kiev, although Saakashvili's party, which is now seeking to unseat Poroshenko at the ballot box, does not have nationwide support, opinion polls show.
Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite said this during a joint meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Vilnius on Friday, an Ukrinform correspondent reports. That led to chaotic scenes and clashes between his supporters and police.
General Prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko later acknowledged that the operation could have been carried out more effectively, but said police had acted in accordance with the law.
"He (Saakashvili) has to answer to investigators and to society regarding the accusations against him", Poroshenko said.
The report on the politician's detention was later posted on Mikheil Saakashvili's Facebook page.
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"They detained Mikheil, now taking him to the Security Service office on Askoldova!"
As of 2200 GMT, a few hundred protesters had gathered near the facility not far from the parliament, shouting 'Shame!' and 'Kiev, get up!' while a large number of police in riot gear stood guard. "If he flees from the investigation, this undermines his credibility", he said.
Mr Saakashvili is suspected of receiving financing from a criminal group linked to ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. Earlier this year, Poroshenko stripped Saakashvili of Ukrainian citizenship while he was out of the country, but the former Georgian president returned in September, helped by supporters.
The latest arrest of the 49-year-old was confirmed by Ukrainian Attorney General Yuri Luzenko.