U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has arrived in Georgia. During the day, he will meet with President Salome Zourabichvili, Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia, Minister of Foreign Affairs David Zalkaliani, and Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church His Holiness Ilia II, November 18, 2020, in Tbilisi. Secretary Pompeo will also meet with representatives of Georgia’s civil society.
The U.S. Department of State published a fact sheet on the matter, highlighting that the U.S. supports Georgia in deepening Euro-Atlantic ties.
Read the full statement below.
“The United States and Georgia have a strong strategic partnership built upon shared values and a deep love of freedom, independence, and unity. The United States remains steadfast in its commitment to Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, and we support the Georgian people’s clear choice to embrace Euro-Atlantic integration.”
– Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo, May 25, 2020
Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo will meet with President Salome Zourabichvili, Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia, Minister of Foreign Affairs David Zalkaliani, and Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church His Holiness Ilia II, November 18, 2020, in Tbilisi. Secretary Pompeo will also meet with representatives of Georgia’s civil society.
THE UNITED STATES SUPPORTS GEORGIA’S DEEPENING EURO-ATLANTIC TIES
- Since gaining its independence, Georgia has made impressive progress fighting corruption, developing modern state institutions, and enhancing global security. The United States established diplomatic relations with Georgia in 1992 following Georgia’s independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
- The United States is committed to helping Georgia deepen its Euro-Atlantic ties and strengthen its democratic institutions and processes. The United States supports Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders and condemns Russia’s 2008 invasion of the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which remain occupied by Russia today. As a participant in the Geneva International Discussions on the conflict in Georgia, the United States continues to play an active role in support of these principles.
- The Trump Administration has worked to strengthen our bilateral ties. The U.S.-Georgia Charter on Strategic Partnership remains an important platform for our discussions with bilateral working groups on democracy; defense and security; economic, trade, and energy issues; and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. An indicator of the comprehensive nature of our partnership was the provision by the United States of more than $127 million in Department of State and USAID foreign assistance to Georgia for Fiscal Year 2019.
- The United States and Georgia have a robust program of people-to-people exchanges ranging from high schoolers under the FLEX program to visiting scholars under Fulbright. The Embassy also supports robust English language training for more than 600 students throughout Georgia. There are more than 5,000 registered alumni of U.S. educational and professional exchanges in Georgia, including senior government officials, key civil society figures, and leading artists.
- Georgia is a member of the U.S.-initiated International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance, which is committed to promoting and protecting international religious freedom for all people around the world.
THE UNITED STATES AND GEORGIA ARE PARTNERS IN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY
- Beyond our bilateral relationship, the United States supports Georgia’s NATO aspirations and deeply values the contributions Georgia is already making to the alliance’s operations, including as one of the largest contributors to Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan. Georgia’s 32nd Battalion will deploy to Afghanistan in support of the Resolute Support Mission in early December. Ministry of Defense (MOD) leadership has stated that Georgia will stay in Afghanistan as long as the United States does.
- Georgian soldiers have served bravely, and we honor the Georgians who have sacrificed their lives or have been wounded in pursuit of global peace and security.
- The United States is committed to supporting Georgia in achieving its goal of developing its capabilities to defend itself against future aggression, and the United States is one Georgia’s primary security partners.
- The Georgia Defense Readiness Program (GDRP) is a U.S.-Georgia bilateral program that focuses on improving the combat readiness of the Georgian Defense Forces and developing Georgia’s institutional capacity to generate units prepared to accomplish assigned national missions, particularly territorial defense. GDRP runs through the end of calendar year 2021.
- The United States and Georgia are working together to determine how best to build off the success of this program in their future bilateral security cooperation.
- The National Guard from the U.S. state of Georgia is Georgia’s state partner under the State Partnership Program, a relationship that started 26 years ago.
- Over the last six years, the United States has provided close to $100 million in security assistance to Georgia. The assistance includes funds to acquire NATO standard weapons, purchase individual equipment, enhance Georgia’s maritime domain awareness, improve the combat readiness of Georgian Defense Forces, and strengthen Georgia’s Special Forces. Georgia also receives approximately $2 million a year in International Military Education and Training funding, with more than 60 percent of MOD and Georgia Defense Force leadership being U.S. military education graduates.