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New Minister of Defence officially takes office

By Ana Robakidze
Tuesday, May 5
Tinatin Khidasheli, the new Minister of Defence, has officially taken office. Accompanied by her predecessor Mindia Janelidze, Khidasheli arrived at the Ministry on Monday morning to meet her staff.

Speaking to the General Staff, Khidasheli said her experience in working in the non-governmental sector for many years is the reason she is quite familiar with the defence and military spheres, and she plans to finish the work started by the former minister.

“One of my tasks is to finalize the process of separating the MoD and the GS. The process started some time ago. Also, Defense law still has to face problems in the parliament. This issue is crucially important, so we could finally introduce the standard required for our future membership of NATO and international community.” Khidasheli said.

Khidasheli is confident she will bring successful reforms to Georgian defence

“I am honored to serve both our soldiers and interests of the country. Both security and defence are closely connected to international relations. I am confident I can do a lot in this field,” Defence Minister told media on May 4. She pointed out that her role is to serve her Ministry from the civil sector and not to overlap with the roles of senior military officers.

“You might see me wearing a military uniform, but I do not think it is essential for a Defence Minister to be seen as a soldier,” Khidasheli stated.

A member of the Republican Party and wife of Parliament speaker Davit Usupashvili, Khidasheli is the first ever female to become in charge of Georgian defence. Khidasheli joined Parliament in 2012 as a majoritarian MP from the Sagarejo constituency in the Kakheti region.