Georgia’s Territorial Integrity Reinforce in NATO Summit Declaration

The Heads of State and Government participating in the meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Brussels on July 11-12, 2018 issued a joint declaration which reiterates the Alliance’s support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, Georgia, and the Republic of Moldova within their internationally recognized borders.

“In accordance with its international commitments, we call on Russia to withdraw the forces it has stationed in all three countries without their consent,” the declaration of NATO’s 29-member states reads.

The document also condemns Russia’s illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea and calls on Russia to withdraw its troops from the territory of the Republic of Moldova and Georgia’s occupied regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

“We call on Russia to reverse its recognition of the Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions of Georgia as independent states; to implement the EU-mediated August 12, 2008 ceasefire agreement, particularly the withdrawal of Russian forces from the territory of Georgia; to end its militarization of these regions; and to stop the construction of border-like obstacles,” the NATO member states say.

The declaration reiterates the decision made at the 2008 Bucharest Summit that Georgia will become a member of the Alliance, with MAP as an integral part of the process.

“We recognize the significant progress on reforms which Georgia has made and must continue, which are helping Georgia, an aspirant country, progress in its preparations towards membership, and which strengthen Georgia’s defense and interoperability capabilities with the Alliance,” the document reads.

It also says that Georgia’s relationship with the Alliance contains all the practical tools to prepare for eventual membership of NATO.

“We highly appreciate Georgia’s significant and steadfast contributions to the NATO Response Force and the Resolute Support mission. These efforts, along with Georgia’s participation in EU-led operations, demonstrate the country’s commitment and capability to contribute to Euro-Atlantic security,” the document reads.

NATO member states have underlined the fact that they stand ready to enhance further their support to Georgia, particularly in the areas of counter-mobility, training and exercises and secure communications, adding they look forward to the next NATO-Georgia exercise in 2019.

“We remain committed to our support for the territorial integrity, independence, and sovereignty of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and the Republic of Moldova,” they added.

In the 79-point declaration, the Heads of State and Government participating in the summit stated NATO remains the foundation for a strong, collective defense and an essential transatlantic forum for security consultations and decisions among Allies, adding the Alliance will continue to pursue a 360-degree approach to security and to fulfil effectively all three core tasks as set out in the Strategic Concept: collective defense, crisis management, and cooperative security.

“NATO will continue to strive for peace, security, and stability in the whole Euro-Atlantic area,” the declaration reads.

By Thea Morrison

12 July 2018 20:39
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