“Today, a piece of land has been officially transferred to us, where we will build a center of Georgian culture. It must be a day all Georgians have been dreaming about because we Georgians are returning to the Holy Land after 300 years of absence,” Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili told the press near the River Jordan, in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
Garibashvili, joined by Prince Ghazi of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, participated in the official ceremony of transferring to Georgia a piece of land near the place of the Savior’s baptism in the River Jordan.
The Prime Minister unveiled a memorial stone with the signatures of the Catholicos-Patriarch of All-Georgia Ilia II and Irakli Garibashvili.
The Prime Minister thanked Prince Ghazi for transferring the land to Georgia. The Head of Government pointed to Prince Ghazi’s decisive contribution to the final decision, a fact Georgia deeply appreciates.
“Let me reiterate the enormous contribution of King Abdullah II, Prince Ghazi, the Patriarch of Jerusalem, our Patriarch, and our Government. We have all worked hard to ensure today’s historic event we are witnessing now. Once again, I congratulate every Georgian, every Orthodox Christian, on this far-reaching achievement, and I once again express gratitude to the King of Jordan and everyone involved in this cause. As for our concept, we will launch active work, and the Patriarchate and the National Museum will be engaged. The Ministry of Culture will receive necessary instructions, so that we may start working together, and the concept will be finalized very soon. I want us to start building very soon. And we will do everything to make sure that the concept is agreed on in a timely manner. Of course, we will introduce this project to the public, and then construction work will kick off,” Garibashvili said.
The 4,000 m2 land, now property of Georgia, is located 15-20 meters from the place of the Savior’s baptism in the River Jordan.