Georgia Hosts Annual Agile Spirit Drills

The annual multinational military drills ‘Agile Spirit’ have been launched at Georgia’s Orpolo firing range, Akhaltsikhe, southern Georgia.

Military personnel from six countries: the United States (US), Bulgaria, Latvia, Romania, Ukraine and Azerbaijan are in Georgia to take part in the drills from September 3-11.

“Conducted by the General Staff of the Georgian Armed Forces (GAF) and US Marine Corps, the exercise will see participants train their interoperability, support regional security and improve operational skills,” the Ministry of Defense (MoD) of Georgia announced.

Agile Spirit 2017 includes command and staff training and, in total, 1515 servicemen are participating.

Georgia’s MoD welcomed the engagement of the regional and other countries in Agile Spirit drills, highlighting that the training facilitates peace and stability in the Black Sea and Caucasus region.

“Our goal is to contribute to the defense of our shared values, free society and peace and to strengthen the trust built during the exercise,” the ministry added.

Agile Spirit 2017 was officially opened by President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili and Defense Minister Levan Izoria.

While addressing the servicemen, President Margvelashvili remembered those who had sacrificed their lives for Georgia and for global security.

“I welcome the military exercise which is now a tradition…Today, your coordination and your determination is very important,” he stated.

Georgia's Supreme Commander-in-Chief thanked all the countries participating in the exercises, Georgia's partners and the organizers of the training.

An exhibition of the military equipment being used in the training was held at the end of the opening event.

Agile Spirit was originally a joint US-Georgian military exercise that began in 2011. In 2015, the combat drills were expanded to include other NATO members and NATO-associated countries.

Thea Morrison

04 September 2017 16:55