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NATO Military exercises launched in Georgia

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Friday, July 10
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Multinational Military Exercise Agile Spirit 2015 has officially launched on July 8.

The NATO-led military training is being held under the NATO-Georgia substantial package, which outlined NATO trainings on Georgian soil as one of the deal’s top priorities

Georgian soldiers along with up to 220 U.S. Marines and platoon-size units from Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania and Romania are taking part in two-week long joint military exercises at the Vaziani base outside Tbilisi.

According to the Georgian Ministry of Defense representatives from the Armenian and Moldovan armed forces are attending the exercises as observers.

Chief of the General Staff of the Georgian Armed Forces Major-General VakhtangKapanadze said that Georgian troops have participated in a lot of international operations and continue providing contribution to the global security side by side with partners.

“Our cooperation is more than mere partnership - this is a brotherhood with weapons. I am sure that we will have to work a lot, though we will achieve a desirable outcome. Professionalism and bravery has no nationality. I would like to express my gratitude to the military and political figures who have contributed to turn Agile Spirit 2015 from bilateral into multilateral exercise. I am sure that it will lead to a great friendship,” stated Kapanadze.

Agile Spirit exercises has become an annual military exercises supplementing other trainings such as preparing Georgian soldiers by the U.S. Marine Corps for deployment in Afghanistan. The first of such drills were held in 2011.

However, this year the U.S. and Georgia launched separate annual joint drills Noble Partner that were held in May, and Agile Sprit has now turned into multinational exercises.