Statement by President Zourabichvili at Press Conference with President Sandu of Moldova

Published in Politics
Wednesday, 19 October 2022 13:54

Madam President, Maia, thank you very much for your hospitality. It is a great honor for me to be here with you today in this very difficult time. This is the first visit by a President of Georgia to Moldova in 12 years. Obviously, such a visit is of special importance for the relations between our countries. But today, against the background of what is happening in Europe and Ukraine, it is very difficult to start our conversation with bilateral relations.

For our countries, the most important thing is what’s happening in Ukraine, and what happened this morning. These harsh acts that Russia is taking against the independence and territorial sovereignty of Ukraine, the bombing of Kyiv, the violence against civilians, are unacceptable in the modern world, unacceptable in Europe, unacceptable for our two countries and our values. Russia’s aggression is an anachronism. It is stuck in a century of wars and totalitarianism.

The war in Ukraine is also an incredible threat to our countries, to Europe, and to the entire world. Aggression cannot win, injustice cannot win, inhumanity must not win.

For our countries with occupied territories, this challenge is even greater since Russia announced mobilization on its territory, Russia has distributed passports in our occupied territories and is conducting mobilization on our citizens. To forcefully involve them in an unjust war, which is not theirs, is a violation of all their rights.

Once again, I condemn Russia’s aggression against the sovereignty of Ukraine and its people. I once again condemn the annexation of Ukrainian territories by Russia. I once again, on behalf of Georgia and the Georgian people, express my solidarity with Ukraine and the Ukrainian people.

The main weapon we can use against Russia’s brutality is the unprecedented solidarity shown by the international community towards Ukraine. The effective solidarity of the United States and the European Union, which Georgia and Moldova fully join, is unique.

Today, the war in Ukraine is a great challenge for Europe. Europe has now seen the true face of Russia. We went through different times, other wars, other occupations, when our European partners looked at Russia differently and still believed that Russia could be a reliable partner, despite its actions. The war in Ukraine changed this view. Now, everyone has seen the true face of Russian aggression, Russian imperialism, its conduct.

Because of this challenge and through the dedication and perseverence of Ukraine and its people, a new path of opportunities has opened. Not only is Europe seeing Russia differently, it is also looking at our countries differently. Those countries that were already moving towards Europe through Association now have an open path with the war in Ukraine. This path is the European perspective for all three countries and the candidate status that has already been given to Ukraine and Moldova. For that, I once again want to congratulate them and in this case, Moldova. We remain in the same perspective, the same path. We have the same reforms to implement. We have a slightly different calendar and have to reach our candidacy status by implementing twelve recommendations, while Ukraine and Moldova also have to carry out reforms.

I am deeply convinced that the three nations that accepted this association together at the Petra Summit as a trio, the three countries that launched a more active phase of European integration together will see the result of this path together. This war will end with the victory of Ukraine, the reconstruction of Ukraine, and our accession to the European Union.

This is the symbolic message of the Prague Summit, where for the first time EU members, candidates, and countries with perspective all sat together around one table, a symbol of the fact that we are all members of the European family. This is our future and not one of us has a different perspective.

This is why our two countries need more solidarity and towards this, we need to strengthen our relations, have more solidarity with and from the EU, for our future is indivisible, our independence is indivisible, and our freedom is indivisible.

How can Europe and the European Union be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia?

Published in Politics
Thursday, 13 October 2022 11:30

During the address at the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the member of Parliament of Ukraine, Serhii Soboliev said that it's impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia.

“it's very important to understand that as well, as it's impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without the free nations of the Western Balkans, including Kosovo. It's also impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. This report has the excellent possibility to understand that now we are all in one boat: a boat of democracy, but this boat must be protected, and must be protected not only by economical methods, but by military methods as well”, - said Serhii Soboliev.

In addition, the member of the Social Democratic Party Titus Corlățean noted: “all the time the EU enlargement process was a huge asset for the European Union”.

“It was the case with the Central Eastern former communist countries; it is the case now with some of the Eastern partners, such as Ukraine, Republic of Moldova, and I hope also Georgia before the end of the year. It should definitely be the case, but not only in making reference to a European perspective. We should use the proper words”, - said Titus Corlățean.

The senator of the French Senate, member of the Union Centrists group, Claude Kern also addressed to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. He said that the European perspective of the Western Balkans should be strongly reaffirmed, without the difficulties associated with joining the European Union.

“The same goes for Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova – and perhaps, I hope, one day for Georgia. But the pre-accession phase is a crucial step if we are to avoid importing systemic problems into the European Union”, - said Claude Kern.

Remind you that the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is holding in Strasbourg from 10 to 14 October.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is due to address the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe by videoconference on Thursday.

There will also be addresses by the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, and the President of the Swiss Confederation, Ignazio Cassis, as well as the Prime Minister of Albania, Edi Rama.

Thomas Byrne, Ireland’s European Affairs Minister, will present the Communication from the Committee of Ministers in the framework of the Irish Presidency of the Council of Europe.

The Organization’s Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić will hold the usual question time with PACE members.

Ukraine and Moldova: arms trafficking threat in focus in wake of Russian invasion

Published in World
Monday, 29 August 2022 11:07

The EU Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM), together with Europol, the OSCE, Frontex, UNODC, and law enforcement agencies from Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova last week convened a meeting of the Arms Working Group on fighting the trafficking of weapons, ammunition and explosives from Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova.

The online meeting focused on the assessment of threats related to arms trafficking in Europe, with a particular emphasis on the availability of weapons, as a consequence of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine.

Experts from international institutions and law enforcement agencies from Moldova and Ukraine presented the latest cases and trends in the detection of illegal weapons at border crossing posts and in the border area.

“The main objective of establishing this Group has been a consolidation of the knowledge, experiences, and efforts of Moldovan and Ukrainian law enforcement agencies as well as international actors to strengthen joint countermeasures against the trafficking of weapons, ammunition, explosives and CBRN materials,” saidSlawomir Pichor, Head of EUBAM.

The purpose of the joint cross-border working group is to assist Moldovan and Ukrainian authorities in effectively countering illicit weapons trafficking and related serious and organised crime in the region and to foster international cooperation.

Find out more

Press release

European Peace Facility: EU adopts assistance measure in support of Moldovan Armed Forces

Published in World
Monday, 04 July 2022 10:43

On 30 June, the Council of the European Union adopted an assistance measure under the European Peace Facility worth €40 million for the benefit of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Moldova.

This measure will strengthen the capacities of the Moldovan Armed Forces’ logistics, mobility, command and control, cyber-defence, unmanned aerial reconnaissance and tactical communications units by providing relevant non-lethal equipment, supplies and services, including equipment-related training.

The new disbursement will complement the €7 million assistance measure adopted in December 2021 which strengthens the capacities of the Military Medical Service and the Engineering Battalion of the Armed Forces.

Find out more

Press release

European Council: Ukraine and Moldova granted EU candidate status

Published in Politics
Friday, 24 June 2022 10:38

On 23 June, EU leaders meeting in the European Council agreed to grant Ukraine and Moldova EU candidate status.

A historic moment. Today marks a crucial step on your path towards the EU,” wrote European Council President Charles Michel on Twitter. “Congratulations to Zelenskyy and Maia Sandu and the people of Ukraine and Moldova. Our future is together.” 

At the same time, the Council decided to recognise the European perspective of Georgia,  and, according to Michel, “is ready to grant candidate status once the outstanding priorities are addressed”.

The decision follows the Opinions issued by the European Commission on all three EU accession applications on 17 June.

I am very pleased with the Leaders’ endorsement of our Opinions,” said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at the press conference following the Council. “Of course, the countries all have homework to do before moving to the next stage of the accession process. But I am convinced that they will all move as swiftly as possible and work as hard as possible to implement the necessary reforms.” She added that the changes needed for the EU accession would primarily benefit the states’ democracies, economies and citizens.

This decision strengthens us all. It strengthens Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia, in the face of Russian imperialism and it strengthens the European Union, because it shows once again to the world that we are united and strong in the face of external threats, said  Ursula von der Leyen.

In their Conclusions adopted on 23 June, EU leaders said:

  • The European Council recognises the European perspective of Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia. The future of these countries and their citizens lies within the European Union.
  • The European Council has decided to grant the status of candidate country to Ukraine and to the Republic of Moldova.
  • The Commission is invited to report to the Council on the fulfilment of the conditions specified in the Commission’s opinions on the respective membership applications as part of its regular enlargement package. The Council will decide on further steps once all these conditions are fully met.
  • The European Council is ready to grant the status of candidate country to Georgia once the priorities specified in the Commission’s opinion on Georgia’s membership application have been addressed.
  • The progress of each country towards the European Union will depend on its own merit in meeting the Copenhagen criteria, taking into consideration the EU’s capacity to absorb new members.

Find out more

Press release

European Council Conclusions

European Commission recommends to grant Ukraine and Moldova EU candidate status, Georgia receives perspective to become EU member

Published in Politics
Monday, 20 June 2022 12:24

Today, the European Commission presented its Opinions on the applications for EU membership submitted by Ukraine, Georgia and the Republic of Moldova as invited by the Council. The European Commission recommended to grant Ukraine and Moldova EU candidate status, while it recommended that Georgia be given the perspective to become a member of the EU, and that candidate status should be granted once a number of priorities have been addressed.

The Opinions are based on the Commission’s assessment in light of the three sets of criteria to join the EU agreed by the European Council: political criteria, economic criteria, and the ability of the country to assume the obligations of EU membership (EU acquis). According to a press release from the European Commission, the Opinions also take into account Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia’s efforts in implementing their obligations under the Association Agreements (AA), including the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas (DCFTA), which cover significant parts of the EU acquis.

Ukraine

The European Commission has found that Ukraine overall is well advanced in reaching the stability of institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for and protection of minorities, and has continued its strong macro-economic record, demonstrating a noteworthy resilience with macroeconomic and financial stability, while needing to continue ambitious structural economic reforms. The country has gradually approximated to substantial elements of the EU acquis in many areas.

Read opinion in full

Moldova  

The European Commission concludes that the country has a solid foundation in place to reach the stability of institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for and protection of minorities; macroeconomic policies have been reasonably sound and progress has been made in strengthening the financial sector and business environment but key economic reforms remain to be undertaken. The country has established a solid basis for further alignment with the EU acquis.

Read opinion in full

Georgia

The European Commission assesses that Georgia has a foundation in place to reach the stability of institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for and protection of minorities, even if recent developments have undermined the country’s progress; it has achieved a good degree of macroeconomic stability and has a sound record of economic policy and a favourable business environment, but further reforms are needed to improve the functioning of its market economy; overall, Georgia has established a solid basis for further alignment with the EU acquis.

Read opinion in full

Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective.” President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen told a press conference announcing the Opinions. “We want them to live with us in the European Union.” 

She added: “Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia share the strong and legitimate aspiration of joining the European Union. Today, we are sending them a clear signal of support in their aspirations, even as they face challenging circumstances.”

“Indeed, this is a historic day for the people of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. We are confirming that they belong, in due time, in the European Union. The next steps are now in the hands of our Member States,” Ursula von der Leyen said.

Based on the European Commission’s Opinions, the EU Member States will now have to decide unanimously on the next steps.

The applications for EU membership by Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova in light of the Commission’s Opinions will be discussed by Heads of State and Government at the European Council next week, on 23 and 24 June. 

Find out more

Press release

Memo on Ukraine: European Commission – Questions and answers

Memo on Moldova: European Commission – Questions and answers

Memo on Georgia: European Commission – Questions and answers

Teimuraz Janjalia has held a meeting with State Secretaries of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova

Published in Politics
Friday, 14 January 2022 13:38

On 13 January 2022, an online-meeting was held between the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia Teimuraz Janjalia and the State Secretaries of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova, Ruslan Bolbocean and Vladimir Cuc.

The bilateral and multilateral relations between Georgia and Moldova, as well as prospects of their future development were discussed at the meeting. The parties underlined the importance of the 30th anniversary of our diplomatic relations in 2022, in light of which various events will take place in the two countries.
Both sides expressed readiness to intensify bilateral political dialogue, including the exchange of the high and the highest-level visits.
It was underlined that despite the pandemic, the positive trend of our trade-economic relations has been maintained. The parties outlined the significance of further deepening the existing cooperation in this domain, including in the field of tourism.

Particular emphasis was made on the direction of the European integration, including the existing successful interaction in frames of the Eastern Partnership, Associated Trio, and the sides stressed importance of strengthening sectoral cooperation and joint projects in this framework. Likewise, the parties underlined significance of one of our shared priority topics – connectivity, and in this respect, full utilization of the Black Sea resources was highly regarded by the colleagues.

Taking into account our common aspirations and interests, both sides underlined importance of intensification of the visits and high-level meetings with our partners in the format of the Associated Trio, through promoting existing, as well as new formats of dialogue.
At the end of the meeting, the parties agreed to maintain active interaction and promote the mutually beneficial future cooperation.

The Foreign Ministers of the Associated Trio have met with the Executive Vice-President of the European Commission for an Economy

Published in World
Friday, 25 June 2021 14:25

The Foreign Minister of the Associated Trio – Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine met with the Executive Vice-President of the European Commission for an Economy, Valdis Dombrovskis.

During the meeting the parties discussed the significance of the establishment of the Associated Trio and its future goals, namely in terms of European Integration and coordinating in terms of common goals, by developing cooperation with the EU, including in terms of establishing sectoral dialogue on economic and trade issues.

MFA Georgia

Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine have established the "Associated Trio"

Published in Politics
Thursday, 20 May 2021 11:57
Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine have established the "Associated Trio". David Zalkaliani, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, publishes information about this on his Facebook page. "The common goal of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine is to unite and become a full member of the European Union /EU/," - the minister said.
The appropriate memorandum was signed in Kiev during a meeting of foreign ministers of said three states.
The final goal of the Associated Trio is accession into the EU.

Angela Merkel to address PACE Spring session

Published in World
Thursday, 15 April 2021 11:09

Strasbourg, 15.04.2021 – On the occasion of the German Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Minister of State for Europe Michael Roth will participate in the spring session of PACE (19-22 April 2021) which will take place in a hybrid format, allowing members to participate remotely or attend in person in Strasbourg.

The President of the Republic of Moldova, Maia Sandu, the President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, and the Secretary General of the organisation, Marija Pejčinović Burić, will also address PACE.

At this session, the Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatović, will present her 2020 annual report and the Assembly will award its Václav Havel Human Rights Prize.

There have been requests for urgent debates on "The arrest and detention of Alexei Navalny in January 2021" and on "The functioning of democratic institutions in Turkey".

Topics on the agenda include a debate on the Assembly's vision of the Council of Europe's strategic priorities and a joint debate on human rights violations and the need for electoral reform in Belarus.

The OECD's work on taxing the digital economy with the participation of its Secretary General Ángel Gurría, discrimination against persons dealing with chronic and long-term illnesses, post-monitoring dialogue with Montenegro, the preservation of national minorities and a European policy on diasporas will also be discussed.

The Assembly will decide its final agenda on the opening day of the session.

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