Updated: 19-Dec-2001 NATO Speeches

19 Dec. 2001


by Lt.Gen, David Tevzadze,
Minister of Defence of Georgia
at the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council
in Defence Ministers session

Mr. Chairman,
Dear Colleagues,

This meeting of Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council in Defence Ministers session is a first one after the Alliance decision to invoke article #5 of the Washington Treaty in response to the outrageous terrorist attack against the U.S.A. Hereby I would like to reiterate the feelings of all Georgians and personally express my sympathy and solidarity with American people after the tragedy, which we consider as a hostile act directed against the whole civilized world.

September 11th has, not only, widely opened our eyes on terrorism as a real threat to every state regardless of its strength and geographical location, which we have to fight with joint effort. It also demonstrated clearly that despite existing contradictions, the civilized world needs to stand together in order to counter this plague of 21st century.

Georgia has declared its support to the international coalition in anti-terrorist campaign We convinced that efforts of democratic society must be directed also to eliminate the feeding sources of terrorism, such as an aggressive separatism, ethnic hatred and religious or other type of fanaticism, i.e. the ideology of terrorism. Based on the unique Georgian geographical location on a crossroad between civilizations, we consider it worthwhile to launch a research project, in EAPC/PfP framework suggesting to analyze the processes held in Caucasus as a model to find some roots or sources feeding the terrorism as mindstand. By inviting NATO/PfP workshop to be conducted in Tbilisi next year we will give the initial impetus to this process.

We welcome Russia's active involvement in anti-terrorist campaign and the current expansion of ties with NATO gives the new impetus to the enhancement of Euro-Atlantic security. We believe that a new format of NATO-Russian relations will provide a useful and effective dialog on key problems, including regional issues.

In this context of events lately having place in Georgia, I would like to inform you about Georgian government's decision to apply for Air Situation Data Exchange with NATO. We are confident, that Georgia's participation in this new initiative will largely enhance our air-space coverage capabilities and provide certain deterrence against intruders.

Finally, I wish to underline that Georgia considers the CFE treaty as of utmost importance for the European security. We fully support NATO position on adapted CFE implementation given by NAC Communique on December 6. Georgia reiterates its firm position concerning the fulfillment of all commitments determined by OSCE Istanbul summit of 1999. In this regard, we stand ready to start the ratification process of the adopted treaty as soon as our counterparts accomplish fully their obligations.

Thank you.

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