NATO Secretary General welcomes strengthened partnership with Georgia
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili to NATO Headquarters on Monday (11 May 2015) for talks on deepening the partnership between the Alliance and Tbilisi. Calling Georgia “a strong partner”, the Secretary General underscored that the country is “an important contributor to our shared security”.
Mr. Stoltenberg thanked the President for Georgia’s “remarkable role” in NATO-led operations over many years, noting that Georgia is currently the second-largest contributor to the Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan.
Due to Georgia’s significant operational contributions, Allied leaders designated the country an “Enhanced Opportunity” partner at last year’s Wales Summit, and also established a “Substantial NATO-Georgia Package” to strengthen Georgia’s defence capabilities. The Secretary General noted that NATO trainers will support Georgian defence reform, and that later in 2015, a NATO-Georgia Training and Evaluation Centre will be established in Georgia. “The Centre will improve our troops’ ability to work together,” Mr Stoltenberg said.
President Margvelashvili and the Secretary General also discussed Georgia’s efforts to make its defence sector more transparent and accountable. Mr. Stoltenberg welcomed the “significant progress” made thus far, and encouraged Georgia to further deepen democratic reforms, including on judicial independence and the rule of law.“Georgia is moving closer to NATO,” the Secretary General said; “we are looking forward to continue working with you on this path.”