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Meeting of the NATO-Georgia Commission held

By Ana Robakidze
Thursday, November 22
The Minister of Defence, Mr. Irakli Alasania, together with the State Minister on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, Mr. Alex Petriashvili, attended a meeting of the NATO-Georgia Commission on Tuesday 20 November 2012. The meeting was closed to media sources.

Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen chaired the meeting. NATO officials, once spoke about the very positive assessment of the October Parliamentary elections in Georgia and emphasized that the country still has to go through presidential elections next year. NATO welcomes Georgia’s commitment to continue on its path to NATO. “The allies welcomed Georgia's commitments to take defence reforms forward and continue on the path of Euro-Atlantic integration." the alliance official web-page says.

The major priorities of the new government, the latest progress in the country and the arrests of former political and military officials, were discussed at the commission meeting. NATO officials stressed the importance of the presence of the rule of law and the absence of selective justice in Georgia. However, the Georgian side managed to assure the alliance in the transparency of the investigation and trial process.

“We have assured our NATO partners that Georgia has become much more stable, much stronger, predictable and a more preferred partner after the recent elections," Alasania commented after the meeting.

“We all understand their (NATO) recommendations. We work intensively on the elaboration of the Annual National Programme (ANP), “Alex Petriashvili commented. The minister also added that the Georgian side is waiting for an official assessment on the previous ANP and only after all NATO recommendations are considered, the new project of ANP will be presented to the allies.

Georgia is seen as one the most serious candidates for membership, Petriashvili told Radio Liberty. The results of the December NATO ministreial are unpredictable. However, the Georgian government expects progress from the alliance, especially after the very successful elections.

Georgia will continue to be involved in the NATO peacekeeping operations after 2014 and the agreed format will not be changed, Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze said at a news conference after the meeting with Great Britain’s Minister of State for Europe, David Lidington. The minister also expressed her hope that the latest democratic advancement of the country will be reflected accordingly in future NATO resolutions.

The next meeting of the NATO-Georgia Commission is scheduled for December and will be attended by the Foreign Ministers.