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Mikheil Saakashvili held a meeting with the U.S. Armed Forces general2009-03-31 10:49
In Monday evening Mikheil Saakashvili, the President of Georgia, held a meeting with the Vice Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General James Cartwright.gt-en-newsitem-inside
At the joint briefing after the meeting Saakashvili said that the visit of one of the high-ranking representatives of the U.S. military command is very important as it means passing to a new stage of military and political cooperation.
"This shift is implied by the Charter on strategic partnership our countries signed in early January," the President said.
He underlined he closely watches the statements of the U.S. administration and highlighted that in the course of the recent meeting with Joe Biden in Munich he obtained strong guarantees of further bilateral cooperation.
Saakashvili also reminded the recent meeting of Grigol Vashadze, the Foreign Minister of Georgia, and Hillary Clinton, the U.S. Secretary of State, and mentioned that a new meeting of Vashadze and Clinton is ahead.
The Georgian leader highlighted the significance of the statement the U.S. President Barack Obama. In his view, this statement contained the strong support of Georgia.
Saakashvili was grateful to the U.S. general for the praise of the Georgian army's training but mentioned that armies are not formed in 3-4 years.
"The maneuvers we conducted in previous years were not prepared for a large-scale war. They were prepared for peacemaking political operations, but now we start training the armed forces of another quality. In conditions where 20 percent of the country is occupied, when risk is high and provocations continue, when the situation in the region is difficult, Georgia will continue creating a modern, high-level, much stronger armed forces, increasing personnel and armaments, and most importantly increasing the level of preparation and defense ", Saakashvili claimed.
He reiterated the readiness of Georgia to build up its participation in the peacemaking operation in Afghanistan and said he had written President Obama about it.
The U.S. general thanked the president and Georgia for the cordial welcome and mentioned the meetings conducted were fruitful.
James Cartwright underlined that Georgia must maintain peaceful relations with its neighbours, and it has the obligations connected with the NATO integration.