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NATO door is open to Georgia-Stoltenberg says after Macedonia’s accession

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, February 8
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says that Macedonia’s accession into NATO means that the alliance's door is open for the countries like Georgia, which adhere to the NATO values for democracy.

Stoltenberg responded to a journalist during the 6 February conference, after NATO’s signing the Accession Protocol with Macedonia, that the alliance sees Georgia’s efforts.

“And we are very encouraged by what we see in Georgia: the commitment to reforms, the commitment to strengthening defense and security institutions, transparency, judiciary reforms. And, therefore, we welcome also the very clear commitment by NATO leaders at the summit in July that Georgia will become a member of the Alliance,” Stoltenberg said.

“We are grateful for all the support Georgia provides to NATO in NATO missions and operations, but also we see that NATO is actually stepping up its support and cooperation with Georgia. So we will continue to support Georgia as it moves towards NATO membership,” he added.

Russia has many times grilled NATO because of Macedonia, as “the country’s accession creates threats to the regional stability.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin openly stated last year that “Russia will react extremely negatively” to Georgian membership in NATO.

NATO members signed an accord with Macedonia on Wednesday allowing North Macedonia to become the 30th member of NATO.

Following the signing of the Accession Protocol, Skopje can now take part in NATO activities as an invitee.

“The accession process now moves to the capitals of the 29 Allies where the Protocol will be ratified according to national procedures. The country will become a member of NATO as soon as all Allies have ratified the Accession Protocol,” NATO says.

The ratification process usually takes about a year.