The messenger logo

Meeting with U.S. Secretary of Army

Thursday, September 25
Unites States Secretary of Army John McHugh paid two-day official visit to Georgia. Defense Minister of Georgia Irakli Alasania hosted the American guest at MoD. The sides discussed bilateral cooperation issues in defense sphere between Georgia and the USA. U.S. Secretary of Army highlighted the importance of U.S. Georgian partnership and expressed readiness that the USA will continue active cooperation with Georgia in the field of defense. The sides also referred to the enduring partnership between the U.S. Army Europe and the Georgian Armed Forces. They highlighted the importance to further increase cooperation in the field of staff trainings for Georgian officers and NCOs. The sides focused on the importance of U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel’s visit to Georgia. As Minister Irakli Alasania outlined, his American counterpart reiterated readiness to assist Georgia in boosting defense capabilities and to support the implementation of the Substantial Package Georgia received at Wales Summit this month. Regional security issues and the Ukrainian crisis was one of the topics of the discussion. The Georgian side again condemned Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine and its annexation of Crimea. The sides focused on the NATO-led international mission in Afghanistan too. Minister Alasania reaffirmed the willingness of the country to participate in the NATO Resolute Support mission from 2015. The US Army Secretary expressed gratitude to the minister for the contribution the Georgian troops are providing to the ISAF mission. Georgian Minister of Defense, in his turn, underscored the United States’ role in treatment and rehabilitation of the wounded Georgian military, as well as the US support for developing rehabilitation capabilities in Georgia. Following the meeting, Defense Minister of Georgia and U.S. Secretary of Army made joint statements. “I am very glad to host the U.S. Secretary of the Army to Georgia. His visit has particular importance as it is held after the visit of U.S. Secretary of Defense Mr. Hagel. Today we discussed the bilateral cooperation issues which we agreed to be deepened during Mr. Hagel’s visit. We have a great experience of bilateral military partnership. Our military fight shoulder to shoulder in the various military operations and have great confidence to one another. Today both sides confirmed each other to continue to deepen the existing cooperation. We also referred to the regional security issues, the existing challenges in the Ukraine and the Middle East that threats not only our region, but the entire world. We also spoke about these challenges and joint efforts to overcome them. I’d also like to outline that our bilateral cooperation aims to boost Georgia’s defense capabilities. This was one of the issues which we discussed at the meeting in details. I want once again to welcome U.S. Secretary of Army to Georgia and wished him every success, as his success is promotion of our countries”, stated Defense Minister of Georgia Irakli Alasania.

“Mister Minister first of all I’d like to thank you for your entire team here at the Ministry for the very gracious and open welcoming you provided. I want to say first of all how much all of us in America, in particular, we, the United States Army appreciate the great partnership that exists between out nations. As you mentioned, the great relationship that two armies have shared in battle fields from Kosovo, to Afghanistan and to Iraq. Again I’d like to mention that I have got a deep honor with the wounded Georgian heroes and launch medical facilities and also in Walter Reed. I am deeply appreciated of the efforts that you and your nation are making to professionalize your wounded warriors care in and also the great sacrifice that your soldiers have made alongside our soldiers. I join the honoring of twenty-nine fallen Georgian heroes from the battles in Afghanistan. I also express my appreciation for your nations continued commitment to the challenges that you’ve mentioned in ISAF. This is something that is struggling not just on the regional bases threat, but from international perspectives as well. And Georgia was among the first to step forward and to commit themselves in joining fight against. Again we deeply appreciate of that. I hope that my presence here today sends a very clear message that the United States and the United States Army made a full commitment to the partnership that is we have been together last ten years. As Secretary Hagel said during his visit, we look forward is to do everything we can, to continue to develop that relationship, to continue to build a partnership that you and I have discussed. I intend to do everything possible to bring more training together for our troops, to make sure that we have persistent presence throughout this region. So that we are prepared as we have been last decade to go forward as equal partners and facing the challenge of this day. During our discussions I was particularly appreciated of your comments with respect to events in Ukraine. The situation here is affecting Georgia and I couldn’t agree more with your observation that we have to stand engaged together as we can deal with this very challenging situation. I can see no positive welcoming these kinds of events for President Putin and Russian Federation. But I can say very clearly that whenever his path maybe the path Georgia and the United States will be continue partnership, continue our path towards our shared vision of the Black Sea Region, of Europe, and indeed all over the world that is together, that is peace and that is free. And important part that we forward will be Georgia’s full accession in to NATO. As I expressed you Mister Minister, the United States stands in full support you for NATO membership and we continue to work together with you to ensure that indeed happens. Thank you again for your hospitality” – outlined the U.S. Secretary of Army.