|Updated: 03-Mar-2005||NATO Press Releases|
(2005)026 2 March 2005
NATO and Georgia sign transit agreement
On Wednesday 2 March, Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia Salome Zourabichvili signed an agreement at NATO HQ regarding the provision of host nation support to and transit of NATO forces and NATO personnel. The agreement provides for important support to NATO operations, and in particular the ISAF mission in Afghanistan. It establishes the framework for NATO and other ISAF contributing nations to send through Georgia important supplies necessary for the sustainment of their forces in Afghanistan.
The agreement provides for transit through Georgia via air, road and rail infrastructure. It also provides the framework for host nation support to NATO operations. Georgia's decision to reach this agreement is an important contribution to the ISAF mission and is particularly significant in light of NATO’s recent decisions taken to further expand the International Security Assistance Force into the West of Afghanistan.
Foreign Minister Zourabichvili also met with the North Atlantic Council.
ISAF’s role is to assist the Government of Afghanistan and the international community in maintaining security within the force’s area of operations. ISAF supports the Government of Afghanistan in expanding its authority to the rest of the country, and in providing a safe and secure environment conducive to free and fair elections, the spread of the rule of law, and the reconstruction of the country. This expansion will establish a permanent ISAF presence in the form of four Provincial Reconstruction teams (PRT) and one Forward Support Base (FSB). Two existing US led PRTs at Herat and Farah will switch to ISAF and two new ISAF PRTs will be established with Lithuania in the lead at Chaghcharan, capital of Ghor province, and Spain in the lead at Qal’eh-ye Now, capital of Baghdis province. Italy and Spain will provide the Forward Support Base (a logistics hub at Herat) with substantial support from other contributors. The extended ISAF mission will provide security assistance in 50% of Afghanistan’s territory.
Images from the opening session of the NATO-Georgia meeting and the signing ceremony will available on the NATO website. For further information contact the NATO Press and Media Service in Brussels, tel. + 32 (0)2 707 50 41, fax: + 32 (0)2 707 50 57.