Saakashvili opening a renovated clinic on October 4 (InterPressNews)
October 5, 2006 -- Georgia's President Mikheil Saakashvili voted in local elections today pledging to "transform the country into a fully-fledged, European-style democracy."
The elections, which come during a major row with Russia over spying allegations, is seen as a test of Saakashvili's popularity.
Moscow severed all transport and postal links with Georgia despite the release of four Russian soldiers arrested by Georgian authorities on charges of spying.
Russian authorities also stopped issuing visas to Georgians, raided Georgian-owned businesses, and said they were considering barring Georgian immigrants from sending money home.
Saakashvili's National Movement party is competing against five other parties and blocs in the poll. First results are expected on October 6.