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Batumi Hosts Georgia Defense and Security Conference

Batumi Hosts Georgia Defense and Security Conference
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The Black Sea coastal city of Batumi is hosting the 12th Georgia Defense and Security Conference (GDSC) on November 1-2.

The main topics of the event are existing and emerging threats and challenges to the Euro-Atlantic security and stability, the possible implications of the rapidly changing security environment.

While delivering his speech, Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili stated that the Georgian people’s ultimate goal is for Georgia to become a member of the Euro-Atlantic community and affirmed that the Georgian Government is fully committed to this goal.

He also spoke about Georgia’s contribution to global security and Georgian soldiers’ bravery while taking part in NATO peacekeeping missions.

“Georgia develops on the path of Euro-Atlantic integration, however, the country’s development is constantly hindered by its northern neighbor that causes numerous problems in the neighborhood and for global security,” he said, referring to Russian occupation of Georgian territories.

“The Russian Federation started a deliberate war against Georgia in 2008. We remember well that the Russian Armed Forces crossed the Georgian border and occupied 20% of our homeland. The same happened in the early 90’s,” he stressed.

Prime Minister of Georgia, Mamuka Bakhtadze, also addressed the conference participants. According to him, Georgia’s response to Russia’s actions is peace and the country’s development and irreversible Euro-Atlantic integration.

“The support of the international community in the peaceful resolution of the Russia-Georgia conflict is just as vitally important. The international community should be unanimous in guarding the principle of the freedom of sovereign states and the inviolability of internationally recognized borders, because protecting the fundamental norms of international law and respect for human rights is the only path to ensure peace and security in the world,” he stated.

This year the GDSC spotlights four interactive themes. The first panel focused on Nations under Pressure – Deflecting the Threat. In light of growing concerns on political, economic and military pressure employed by Russia, participants discussed existing threats and challenges for states willing to join the European and Euro-Atlantic community and reflect on how these countries can increase their resilience to Russia’s revisionist foreign policy.

During the second panel on Modern Complexities of Total Defense, the panelists shared their views on challenges and opportunities that should be taken into consideration while implementing the Total Defense concept into practice.

The third panel focuses on Challenges to the Euro-Atlantic Community – Adapting to the Changing Security Environment, focusing on NATO defense posture and the EU’s new security and defense initiatives.

The fourth panel is dedicated to the “Open Door” policy in the aftermath of 2018 Brussels Summit – Georgia`s transformation on the path to membership. The participants will reflect on NATO’s strategic agenda after the Brussels Summit 2018, analyzing the prospects for aspirant countries joining NATO, as well as Georgia’s transformation process to meet political, economic and military criteria for membership.

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