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Defence Minister concludes her visit to Canada

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, November 24
Georgia’s ambitions towards membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and Russia’s aggressive activities on the Georgian soil were high on the Georgian Defence Minister’s agenda in Canada at the Halifax International Forum, held between November 20-22.

Within the event, Georgia’s top defence official delivered a speech at the forum session entitled Cooperate, Contain, or Conquer: Prioritizing Strategy 70 Years On, in which the Georgian official touched on the challenges and future threats the West faced after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Berlin Wall.

During the forum, Khidasheli also met with the Deputy Defence Secretary of the United States Robert Work, the National Defence Minister of Canada Harjit Sajjan, the Defence Minister of the Netherlands Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, the Defence Minister of Albania Mimi Kodheli, the Minister of Defence of the Republic of Macedonia Zoran Jolevski and the Montenegro Defence Minister Milica Pejanonic Durisic.

Significant portions of all the meetings were dedicated to Georgian-NATO cooperation and the implementation of the Substantial package NATO granted to Georgia last year.

Following the meetings, the Georgian Defence Minister unveiled certain details of the discussions.

“I spoke with the Defence Minister of Albania and we specified the details of the next meeting, as we intend to visit the country in December of this year.

“From the Netherlands, we are asking for more support in the frames of the NATO-Georgia Substantial Package. We invited the Dutch Minister of Defence to Georgia. We have also discussed several concrete formats of future cooperation.

“When it comes to Montenegro, it is one of the hottest issues now as we wait for the NATO open door policy to be confirmed this year through inviting Montenegro to NATO,” Khidasheli said.

The Georgian official also invited her Canadian counterpart to Georgia, who promised Khidasheli closer cooperation in the process of implementing the current NATO-Georgia deal.

Canada was also seen to participate in the creation of the Vocational Development School that was scheduled to open in Georgia next year, as one of the obligations of the Substantial Package.

Georgia was among the 300 representatives from more than 60 different states that were gathered to address the regional and wider world security topics and existing challenges.