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Georgian President visits Afghanistan

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, March 18
The President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili paid a visit to Afghanistan to meet with Georgian soldiers serving within the ISAF mission. Margvelashvili talked with the soldiers and got familiarized with the work of the operative management center in Helmand Province where the Georgian battalion is located.

“Naturally, the heroism that you demonstrate here on a daily basis has unfortunately called for sacrifices. And you should know that we are proud and we are carrying pain for those who were wounded and those who lost their lives during the mission,” the President stated, noting that alongside the other members of the coalition, Georgia has done a lot to make the world more peaceful, and a lot for the stability of global order and global peace.

“[The American soldiers feel prideful and speak with appreciation for the devotion, special success and dignity that exist in the Georgian Army. And this attitude is common for every American general who has ever served with Georgian soldiers,” Margvelashvili stated.

The National Security Secretary Irine Imerlishvili, Chief of Staff of Armed Forces Vakhtang Kapanadze, and the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee for Defense and Security Irakli Seiashvili accompanied the president.

Meanwhile, Zarar Ahmad Osmani, Foreign Minister of Afghanistan visited Georgia on March 17, and met with the Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Gharibashvili and Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze.

Panjikidze stressed that it was the first visit of Afghan officials to Georgia. She informed that the Afghan side is interested in economic collaboration with Georgia as well.

“I confirmed to the Foreign Minister of Afghanistan that Georgia is ready to take part in the ISAF mission after 2014. We are also ready to share our experience with them,” Panjikidze stated.

Osmani thanked the Georgian side for invitation. According to him, the meeting concerned cooperation in transport and economy.

“The military forces will stay in Afghanistan after 2014 only for to train our law-enforcers. I am sure that Georgia will have its worthy place during the process,” Osmani said.

The Georgian Foreign Minister stated that there is a presidential election in Afghanistan in April, 2014 that is a very important date for the country.