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New U.S Ambassador makes his address to Georgians before arrival

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Tuesday, September 15
The U.S. Department of State has released a video in which the new U.S. Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly addresses the Georgian people.

He has just replaced Richard Norland on the post.

“It’s an honor for me to serve as the new American Ambssador to Georgia. I firstly visited Tbilisi in 1976 as a college student. I was impressed with the city’s beauty. I look forward to using my thirty years in diplomacy to help Georgia fully realize its Euro-Atlantic aspirations,” says Ian Kelly in his video address.

Kelly stresses that the United States stands with Georgia and supports its striving towards NATO and the EU.

“America stands with Georgia, as it works towards becoming a free, independent and successful European state. Through my experience in NATO and OSCE, I gained deep respect for Georgia’s contributions to international peace and security,” he said.

The ambassador stated that his country was for Georgia’s advancement to the economic field and stressed the importance of a new Silk Road route that was initiated by the Chinese governmentt and envisaged connecting Europe and Asia through the shortest and easiest ways.

Georgia was part of the route centuries ago and now wishes to become the part of the modern incarnation of the Silk Road.

“As an OSCE Ambassador and U.S. co-chair of the Minsk Group in 2013, I developed an appreciation for the regional challenges facing Georgia. I’m also eager to support Georgia’s economic development, particularly in reviving the silk-road trade route between Europe and Asia,” he said.

“Coming from the great city of Chicago, my wife Francesca, our children and I will miss the city’s legendary deep-dish pizza, and the baseball games of our beloved ‘Chicago Cubs’. But we are excited to taste Georgian Khachapuri and watch the Georgian national soccer team play. And of course, we look forward to Georgia’s legendary hospitality and fascinating ancient culture,” Ian Kelly concluded.

Ian Kelly will visit Georgia in a day. He swore his oath as the Ambassador to Georgia on September 11. He has spent his career in diplomatic field.