|Last update: 25-Oct-2004 17:35
Eliminating deadly weapons in Georgia
Several hundred old anti-aircraft missiles have now been safely destroyed in Georgia, as part of a NATO-led project to dispose of decommissioned military equipment and unexploded ordnance.
The project, due to be completed in January 2005, will see the disposal of over 300 missiles stored at the Ponichala and Chaladid bases in Georgia.
They are now gradually being dismantled and the warheads removed. The warheads are then transported to the Vaziani Polygon, where they are exploded in a controlled manner.
The process is supervised by experts from the NATO Maintenance and Supply Agency, which serves as the executing agent of the project.
The destruction considerably increases security in the area and prevents environmental contamination that otherwise could occur from these weapons.
Eliminating weapons stocks
The project is part of NATO's Partnership for Peace Trust Fund initiative.
The Trust Fund is a tool to support NATO and partner activities to destroy landmines, small arms, light weapons, surplus munitions, and to help manage the consequences of defence reform.
Initiatives are developed on a project basis and led by NATO and partner nations. The costs of project in Georgia are estimated at 0.8 million euros and Luxembourg serves as the lead NATO nation for the project. Georgia will also make a substantial contribution in kind.