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Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia

 

Interim Meeting of the Wardrop Strategic Dialogue

Interim Meeting of the Wardrop Strategic Dialogue between the UK and Georgia - a traditional high-level annual dialogue encompassing numerous issues of bilateral cooperation – was held on May 3 in London.

Georgian side was represented by the Director of the Department for Europe at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, Nino Baratashvili, Ambassador of Georgia to the UK Tamar Beruchashvili and Minister Councillor Kakhi Kenkadze. Director of the Eastern Europe and Central Asia Department at the FCO, Michael Tatham, Deputy Director Jennifer McNaughton, as well as the representatives of the UK Ministry of Defense, British Council and the Good Governance Fund participated in the meeting from the UK side.

The Meeting aimed at undertaking preparation works for the upcoming Wardrop Strategic Dialogue to be held in October 2017 in London. In view of the strategic importance of the dialogue, particular attention was paid to cooperation in the political, defence and security areas. Taking into consideration the new environment in the UK, the country is committed to maintain its leading role in global affairs and to deepen cooperation with Georgia.

The UK once again reiterated its support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders, and expressed concern over the grave security and human rights situation in Georgia’s regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia. The UK firmly supports the peaceful resolution of the conflict in Georgia, based on full respect of the principles of international law.

The parties touched upon the possibility to improve trade and economic relations. The parties are committed to intensify people-to-people contacts and educational and cultural cooperation, which includes increasing the number of English language courses and scholarships for Georgians. Furthermore, strengthening twinning ties between the cities of the UK and Georgia was discussed.

Moreover, the deepening of partnership between the two countries on the multilateral arena has been discussed. The UK underlined its continuous support to Georgia’s European and Euro-Atlantic aspirations.

After the meeting, the parties visited the Iraq and Afghanistan War Memorial dedicated to the military and civilian personnel who served in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

It must be underlined that the dialogue is named after Sir Oliver Wardrop, UK’s first Chief Commissioner in Transcaucasus posted to Tbilisi from 1919-1921 and an avid supporter of the first Georgian republic. Sir Oliver also contributed to the promotion of Georgian culture and literature.

 
 
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