Defence Minister’s Speech at NATO Parliamentary Assembly
2 May 2015
Defence Minister of Georgia Irakli Alasania delivered a speech at “83rd Rose-Roth Seminar” -South Caucasus: Geopolitics, Euro-Atlantic Integration and Domestic Changes. Irakli Alasania informed the participants of the seminar about the ongoing reforms in defence sphere, reviewed a new approach of the government towards the conflict resolution issues and focused on the democratic process in the country after the October elections. The speech was followed by the questions and answers session. In his speech Minister underlined the importance of Georgia’s participation in ISAF mission: “We are very proud of our troops, what they are doing, how are they performing there. It is always pleasant to hear the assessment from the startegic allies and friends like you are”. As Minister outlined, Georgia’s path to NATO integration is performance based: “I have full confidence when I am saying that the path to the EU is irreversible.We are going to do our homework very hard. We think that progress will be accomplished and acceptance will be from the allies”. Talking about conflict resolution issues, Minister stated: “We do not see imminent threat from the Russian forces. We have not illusion that Russia will change its position for Georgia`s territorial integrity and NATO aspiration but we have responsible and vigilant not to give Russia any pretext to attack us. This gives us more room and space to develop our economy our institutions and to talk with Abkhazians and Ossetians.” One of the focal points of Minister’s speech was the transparency of the Defence Ministry and civilian control over the armed forces. According to Irakli Alasania, Defence Ministry is actively working with the parliamentary committee on defence and security to have the oversight of spending in procurements. Cooperation with NGO sector has been considerably enhanced. “We also continued working on the SDR that was started during previous administration. We worked on this document and is ready for signature by the president, it is result of the collective work of the new government and previous administration”, declared Defence Minister. As Minister highlighted, a soldier is in the center of attention and Defence Ministry feels responsible to take care of their social welfare, infrastrucuture and military education. The conference, organized by NATO Parliamentary Assembly and Parliament of Georgia, has opened today and will officially close on May 1. Chairman of Defence and Security Committee welcomed the participants of the seminar. Prime-Minister of Georgia, Bidzina Ivanishvili and Chairman of Parliament Davit Usupashvili addressed the audience.
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