Irakli Garibashvili Adresses Georgia Defence and Security Conference

Published in military
Thursday, 07 November 2019 10:30

It is a great honor for me, as the Minister of Defence, to host you at the 13th Georgia Defence and Security Conference, within which we will be able to discuss the security challenges facing us and to openly discuss ways to resolve them.

First of all, let me begin by commending the efforts of the Ministry of Defence and the active support of our partner countries and organizations. The Conference has established itself as a far-reaching, significant platform for addressing contemporary regional and international defense and security issues.

We live in an era, where our capabilities and opportunities, grow simultaneously with more dynamic and diverse security challenges; hence demanding our constant attention and adequate response.  We realize that the world dynamics are more important to us today than ever and we need to have a clear-eyed awareness of that global completion environment that is continuously responding in the political, economic, and military domains.

Within that context the Georgia Defence and Security Conference is focusing this year on the evolving importance and issues related to the security environment in the Black Sea region. We want to spotlight on the NATO commitments to reinforce its eastern borders by enhancing deterrence of the allies, and the role of Georgia in upholding regional stability while contributing to international security efforts.

I am confident that debates and discussions will be of outstanding quality, as we address these issues from the very country whose 20 percent of the territory is occupied by Russian Forces, where the so called ‘borderization’ of the Administrative Boundary Line is ongoing and where Russia continues its destabilizing and destructive malign activities. And this is a geostrategic region of vital importance to many countries:

  • Where, since history remembers, East has been meeting the West;
  • Where this region has been a major intersection of diverse cultures and routes for various purposes;
  • Where the Black Sea region now represents a significant and increasingly vital piece of the overall security puzzle in the Euro-Atlantic security architecture;
  • And Where Georgia, as an indivisible part of this picture and a key partner to the U.S. and NATO, is ever developing, is ever-strengthening and is focused on joining the security circle.

On its path towards the NATO and EU membership, with significant support from our strategic partners, Georgia is dedicated to further enhance its transformation process, in order to build a stronger, more efficient and effective defence system, strengthen operational capabilities and to achieve maximum compatibility with NATO in order to protect our territorial integrity and maintain our national sovereignty.

This process hasn’t been easy, against the background of the demanding security situation we face.  Nevertheless, we are proud to say that we have been successful in upholding democratic values, rule of law, advancing our defence capabilities and at the same time remaining committed to contributing to international security efforts.

We firmly believe that our Strength is in Unity; unity within Georgia and with our international partnerships. That strength is manifested in our commitment, coherence and consistency. Together, with joint and complementing efforts, we will build a more stable, secure environment for our future generations.  The dialogue for the next two days during our planned sessions and during the social interaction outside of the sessions will be important to our collective understanding and our building of that strength.  And I look forward to the opportunities presented therein.

Having said this, ladies and gentlemen, I would like to conclude by thanking the personnel of the Ministry of Defence, for their immense efforts to organize this event and all of our partners — the Munich Security Conference, the Royal Institute for the United Kingdom Defense and Security Studies (RUSI), the Polish Embassy, as the NATO Contact Point Embassy in Georgia— for their outstanding support and assistance. We are truly honored and look forward to continued cooperation in the future.

Finally, I would like to express my deep appreciation to honorable speakers and Conference attendees. I believe that this year’s GDSC will address pressing issues and generate innovative approaches to the challenges on our common security agenda.

Now I would like to pass the floor to our special honorable guests, who have been strong supporters and dedicated friends of Georgia, whose contributions continue to be vital for Georgia’s development as well as for the development of Georgia’s Defence Forces self-defense and resilience capabilities, Congressman Adam Kinzinger and the Commander of the United States Army Europe, General Christopher Cavoli. 

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  • Georgia Defence and Security Conference

    Ministry of Defence of Georgia will host the 13th annual Georgia Defence and Security Conference (GDSC) on November 6-7 in Batumi, Hotel Hilton.

    Over the past thirteen years, Georgia Defence and Security Conference has developed into a unique forum in the region, where key topics related to Euro-Atlantic security and regional stability are addressed by senior Georgian and foreign policy-makers, experts, representatives of non-governmental organizations, media and academic circles.

    This year the GDSC will spotlight four interactive themes. The first panel will focus on discussions of the security environment in the Black Sea Region. During the second panel - Georgia on the Right Track- for the NATO and EU Membership – the panelists will share their views about Georgia’s path towards NATO membership. The third panel will be dedicated to discussions of hybrid tactics and hybrid threats and the last one – “Georgia’s Strategic Readiness: From Words to Action”.

    For additional information, please, visit the official web-site of the Georgia Defence and Security Conference:

    Media Accreditation:

    The conference is open for media. Media representatives interested in covering the GDSC should apply the Ministry of Defense of Georgia for accreditation from October 28th to November 4th. Accreditation cards will be issued before the official opening of the event. For accreditation, please send the data requested below to the e-mail address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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  • Defense Minister Met with Georgian Soldiers in Germany

    Defence Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili paid a visit to German Federation Republic where Georgian soldiers are undergoing pre-deployment training for NATO-led Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan.

    Irakli Garibashvili attended the demonstrative training with the participation of Georgian soldiers together with American Generals. The leadership of the training positively estimated the readiness level of Georgian military.

    While visiting US Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Defense Minister was briefed on the presentation on the training process and got detailed information on Georgian unit’s pre-deployment training to Afghanistan.

    Another battalion of Georgian Defense Forces undergoes final pre-deployment training for Afghanistan in US Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, German Federation.  Prior to Germany the unit underwent foru-month long exercises in National Training Center Krtsanisi in Georgia. After the final estimation the Georgian battalion will leave for Afghanistan to carry out Resolute Support mission.      

  • Defense Minister’s Meeting with Laura K. Cooper

    Strengthening US-Georgian military cooperation, developing Georgia’s territorial defence capabilities and Georgia’s common share in global security along with USA were the main topics Defense Minister Irakli Garibashvili discussed with Laura K. Cooper. On the very first working week as a Defense Minister, Irakli Garibashvili hosted the representative from Pentagon – Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia Laura K.Cooper.

    At the meeting the sides discussed renewing process of the Security Cooperation Framework, which will be signed during the upcoming visit of Georgian Defense Minister to the USA.

    Minister emphasized the strategic partnership between Georgia and the USA and expressed appreciation to Laura K. Cooper and the U.S. Government for the political and practical support in defense and security field of Georgia. He reassured the U.S. side that he will serve to make this relationship even stronger and deeper.

    “We have exciting agenda moving forward and many opportunities to deepen our strategic partnership that is built on excellent work Georgia has done in reforming its Ministry of Defense and building its capability as part of Georgia Defense Readiness Program. I am looking forward for the future of this cooperation with the Ministry of Defense of Georgia”, - stated Laura K. Cooper.      

  • EU-supported study finds regional cooperation vital for protecting Black Sea ecosystem

    Protecting the delicate Black Sea ecosystem was in focus on 5 August in the Port of Batumi in Georgia, as scientists on board the international research ship “Mare Nigrum” presented the results of their regular surveys on water quality and the state of marine biodiversity.

    The survey’s latest iteration showed positive trends in biodiversity along the Georgian coast, especially at Sarpi, Mtsvane Kontskhi and Tsikhisdziri.

    In the past, similar surveys have raised concerns about the impact of pollution on the Black Sea, which is surrounded by six countries – Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine – and serves as the discharge point for many major European rivers, including the Danube, Dniester, Don, Bug, Kuban and Rioni.

    Ecological worries include plastic waste (currently measured at 90.5 items per sq. km), the presence of microplastics at depths of 2,000 metres, an influx of hazardous chemicals, and the arrival of invasive species.

    Speakers at the event emphasised the importance of regional cooperation in preserving the Black Sea’s health.

    The surveys have been conducted regularly since 2014 by the EU-funded Environmental Monitoring of the Black Sea (EMBLAS) project. Working in close cooperation with the governments of Georgia and Ukraine, EMBLAS conducts regular monitoring in the Black Sea basin. It also offers small grants for measures aimed at reducing pollution and makes recommendations to policymakers on how to reduce threats to the Black Sea ecosystem.

  • The NATO Military Committee to visit Georgia

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    As a show of support to its long-time partner, the NATO Military Committee will hold a meeting in the NATO-Georgia format chaired by the Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, Air Chief Marshal Peach and the Georgian Minister of Defence, Mr Levan Izoria. The opening remarks will be open to the media. The NATO Military Committee will receive an overview of the regional security situation, including the occupied regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, and the Black Sea. The NATO Military Representatives will then be briefed on the ongoing implementation of the Substantial NATO-Georgia Package, the ongoing Georgian Reforms as well as the continuing Georgian contributions to NATO operations and exercises. 

    On the 28th of March, the NATO Military Committee will head to the Vaziani Military Base to receive a briefing from the Combat Training Centre and visit the Georgia Defence Readiness Programme, a bilateral programme designed, by the US, to improve Georgian troops’ combat readiness and develop a self-sustaining institutional capacity to man, train and equip their national missions. 

    The NATO Military Committee will then proceed to the Joint Training and Evaluation Centre to observe the “NATO-Georgia Exercise 2019”. This joint multinational brigade-level, Command Post exercise aims to further develop the interoperability of Georgian, Allied and Partner Forces, as well as Georgian command and control capabilities.


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