Georgian Defence Forces mark 28th anniversary

The April 30 date marks annual celebrations for the Georgian Defence Forces. Photo: Ministry of Defence of Georgia press office., 30 Apr 2019 - 16:58, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Defence Forces are celebrating 28 years since their founding, with formal celebrations involving officials and military commanders joined by congratulatory messages from the public today.


Official occasions to mark the date were held in Georgia as well as locations where peacekeepers from the country are serving in international missions, while service members from allied nations offered their messages of support.


Military and civilian personnel involved in the armed forces heard addresses by officials including the President and Prime Minister of Georgia as well as the Minister of Defence in an anniversary event in Tbilisi.


Minister Levan Izoria and Chief of the Defence Forces Major General Vladimer Chachibaia also visited two Tbilisi cemeteries to pay respects to military personnel fallen in the 1992-1993 War in Abkhazia and the 2008 war between Russia and Georgia.





In Kabul Georgian and allied peacekeepers ran a marathon in shirts marked as ‘Georgian Defence Forces Day’ to celebrate the occasion. Photo: Ministry of Defence of Georgia press office.


Beside taking part in the main celebration, the minister and military commander extended their messages to hundreds of peacekeepers serving in NATO’s Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan, the European Union Training Missions in the Central African Republic and Mali.


They heard from Izoria and Chachibaia who revealed an initiative by Prime Minister Irakli Bakhtadze to provide officers of the Defence Forces with land on Mount Makhata, in the north of Tbilisi, where apartments are being built for the personnel.


Izoria said the land would be handed to the long-serving service members for free while the state would finance 40 percent of the cost of apartments for the future residents.


The troops serving at the Hamid Karzai International Airport military base in Kabul — one of three locations featuring Georgian peacekeeping presence in Afghanistan — also marked the day with their own activities.


Joined by service members from allied nations, the Georgian personnel held a marathon run at the HKIA base and handed out prizes to winners in various categories.





Service members pay respects to service members fallen in conflicts for Georgia’s territorial integrity. Photo: Ministry of Defence of Georgia press office.


The defence forces also received congratulatory messages for the anniversary from their counterparts from NATO member and allied states, as well as public figures, artists and citizens in Georgia.


Georgia’s first regular army served the First Democratic Republic of the country between 1918-1921, while the April 30 date is marked after the day first conscripts were drafted for service of the newly independent post-Soviet Georgian republic in 1991.


The armed forces service followed the founding of the National Guard of Georgia, the first regular formation of the new state in December 1990.


Over the next two decades the country’s armed forces fought in the civil war and the Abkhazia conflict in the early 1990s and the 2008 war with Russia.


The Georgian Armed Forces, recently rebranded as Georgian Defence Forces, have also served in international missions from Kosovo in Europe to Iraq and Afghanistan in the Middle East and Mali and the Central African Republic on the African continent.