Georgian delegation leaves for Wales with “great expectations”

The Georgian delegation to the NATO Summit was headed by President Giorgi Margvelashvili., 03 Sep 2014 - 12:08, Tbilisi,Georgia

A Georgian delegation, led by President Giorgi Margvelashvili, has left for the United Kingdom to take part in the NATO Summit in Wales on September 4 and 5.

Before the Summit, President Margvelashvili was scheduled to hold meetings in London, where today he is due to deliver a speech about "Georgia and European security in terms of Ukrainian crisis” at the Royal Institute of International Affairs.

Later today Margvelashvili is scheduled to meet President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Suma Chakrabarti.

Meanwhile at the NATO Summit on Thursday and Friday, the Georgian President will attend meeting of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission member states, in which Georgia contributed troops. He is also expected to hold bilateral meeting with different state leaders and international organisation leaders.

Interviews with local and international media are also scheduled.

The Georgian delegation to Wales included:

  • Defence Minister Irakli Alasania,
  • Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze,
  • State Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Alexi Petriashvili,
  • Secretary of the National Security Council Irina Imerlishvili,
  • Chief of General Staff of the Georgian Armed Forces (GAF) Major-General Vakhtang Kapanadze,
  • President Margvelashvili’s foreign adviser Tengiz Pkhaladze, and
  • Georgia's Ambassador to NATO Levan Dolidze.

Before leaving, Defence Minister Alasania said the Summit would be focused on increasing military abilities of the NATO countries and Georgia.

"As far as I have been informed, taking particular steps is planned in order for Georgia to be given more possibilities to protect its territory and society,’’ Alasania said.

Foreign Minister Panjikidze said she also had high hopes of the Summit.

"We have great expectations in terms of a concrete package and a serious message that Georgia is closer to the alliance,’’ she noted.

NATO earlier said Georgia would not be issued a Membership Action Plan (MAP) at the Summit but would be offered an "unprecedented package”.

Yesterday NATO Security General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the package the Alliance planned to offer would assist Georgia continue reforms and modernisation of its defence and security sector and "step up” its efforts to improve the ability of the Georgian Armed Forces to work and operate alongside NATO forces, "including more Georgian participation in NATO exercises”.