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Foreign Minister Paet Met With Georgian President Saakashvili

08.09.2010

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet emphasised to Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili that in the interest of alleviating the post-conflict situation, efforts must be continued to bring international observers back to the entire Georgian territory. “A long-term political solution must be based on respect for Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” Paet stressed. “Serious attention must also be given to alleviating the situation of the internally displaced persons and including the residents of the occupied territories in everyday life,” said Paet.

Foreign Minister Paet expressed to Saakashvili that Estonia supports Georgia’s integration with the European Union and NATO. “It is necessary for Georgia to persistently and patiently continue with domestic and economic reforms that bring it closer to the EU and NATO,” said Foreign Minister Paet. “Estonia supports rapid progress in bringing the visa facilitation agreement between the European Union and Georgia into effect and in concluding a readmission agreement,” Paet added.

In talking about co-operation within the framework of European Union Neighbourhood Policy and Eastern Partnership, Foreign Minister Paet emphasised that Georgia should take advantage of all the opportunities available to support its reform process. “Eastern Partnership offers Georgia as well as the other Eastern Partnership countries a useful opportunity to grow closer to the European Union,” Paet stated.

Georgia has been and for the time being will remain the greatest receiver of Estonia’s bilateral development aid, as well as one of Estonia’s development co-operation priority partners alongside Ukraine, Moldova and Afghanistan. “Estonia is prepared to share its reform experiences through development co-operation projects. Many development co-operation projects have been or are currently being carried out – some examples are training programmes for Georgian police officers, state officials, young diplomats and university students, the reforming of vocational education, and projects for increasing the administrative capability of the state,” Paet listed.

Foreign Minister Paet also met with Georgian Prime Minister Nika Gilauri, with whom he discussed Estonia-Georgia relations, including the advancement of economic ties and Georgia’s movement towards the European Union and NATO.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that regardless of the very good political relations between Estonia and Georgia, there is still tremendous room for development in trade and reciprocal investments. “In order to enliven economic relations, we must further develop the treaty base, which would give entrepreneurs a clear legal framework for business activity,” Paet noted. Paet and Gilauri expressed hope that the agreement for the protection of investments would come into effect soon.

Within the framework of his visit, Foreign Minister Paet will also be visiting IDP villages located near the occupation lines of the occupied areas – namely Tserovani, Odzisi, and Ergneti, as well as the town of Gori and Mtskheta – along with the director of the European Union Monitoring Mission in Georgia Hansjörg Haber. In addition, he has meetings planned with the governors of Shida Kartli and Mtskheta Tianeti.

Photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/estonian-foreign-ministry


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