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  2. 2. 2 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 2011 Official Visits Celeste Wallander Visit to the Republic of Armenia in Cadets Military Lyceum The Minister of Defence of Georgia Bacho Akhalaia paid an On February 1, the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense,official visit to the Republic of Armenia on April 19. In the frame- Doctor Celeste Wallander, visited Georgia with the purpose to at-work of the official visit he met with his Armenian counterpart tend the Georgian Defense Conference (GDC). Doctor WallanderSeyran Ohanyan and the President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan. An Visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan together with the Deputy Defense Minister Nodar Kharshiladzeexpanded meeting was also held with the participation of the rep- Minister of Defense of Georgia Bacho Akhalaia paid an offi- visited Cadets Military Lyceum. The US deputy assistant secre-resentatives of the Defence Ministries of Georgia and Armenia. cial visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan on May 17. The Georgian tary of defense with her accompanying delegation became acquaint-The meeting was attended by the defence ministers, their deputies, minister held meetings with his Azeri counterpart Colonel General ed with the Lyceum, its infrastructure, classrooms, dormitory build-the leadership of the Armed Forces and the heads of various de- Safar Abiyev and President of Azerbaijan Ilham Heydar Oglu ings, recreational and dining facilities, as well as its basketball andpartments. The main topics of discussion at the meeting were the Aliyev. football stadiums. “We came to Georgia to visit the cadets’ acad-ongoing defence reforms, participation in international missions During the meetings, the main topics discussed were the reli- emy as part of the Office of the Secretary of Defense visit to Geor-and military education. The Georgian Defense Minister offered to able and stable relations within the region and the defence reforms gia. We witnessed a very impressive Georgian cadet’s academy,share with his Armenian counterpart his ten years of experience achieved between Georgia and Azerbaijan, including military ed- which was very modern. We visited the classrooms and recreationalparticipating in the international operations. He also informed his ucation. Georgian Defense Minister Bacho Akhalaia offered his facilities. We were overall very impressed and we think it can becolleague about the plan to establish a regional training center in Azeri counterpart the opportunity to train the military servicemen a very important piece of Georgia’s focus on institution buildingGeorgia, where Georgian military servicemen, military units at the of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces at the Sachkhere Mountain Train- in the Georgian armed forces, which we think will help Georgiabattalion level from Armenia, the countries of the Caucasus, the ing School. with its Euro-Atlantic integration,” said the Pentagon’s CountryBlack Sea and the central Asian regions will be trained in interna- The Georgian side expressed its readiness to share their experi- Director for Georgia and Moldova, Mark Simakovsky.tional operations. According to the statement of the Georgian Min- ence of participating in the international peacekeeping missions toister of Defense, the preparation of units by joint exercises will be their Azeri colleagues. In the framework of the visit, the Georgianmore effective in terms of sparing time and financial resources in defense minister laid a wreath at the cemetery of Heydar Aliyevcomparison to other European training centers. Bacho Akhalaia and went sightseeing in Baku.expressed his readiness to provide training to the Armenian mili-tary servicemen at Sachkhere Mountain Training School, whichhas been awarded the status of a NATO “Partnership for Peace”training and educational centre. The Armenian Defense Ministryshowed the Georgian delegation the Vazgen Sarkisyan MilitaryInstitute and briefed them on the educational system of the mili-tary personnel and their living conditions. Lieutenant General Jurgen Bornemann visits Georgia Lieutenant General Jurgen Bornemann, the Director General of International Military Staff of NATO met with the Chief of the Visit to the Republic of Turkey Visit to the Republic of Poland Joint Staff of GAF Major-General Devi Chankotadze on Febru- Georgian Defense Minister Bacho Akhalia held a meeting with Georgian Minister of Defense Bacho Akhalaia paid a two-day ary 1. The key topics of bilateral discussion included cooperationhis Turkish counterpart, National Defense Minister Vecdi Gönül official visit to Poland on June 1. The Georgian defense minister in the field of education, peacekeeping operations and defenceon May 12. The two colleagues discussed cooperation issues with- held face to face meetings with his Polish counterpart Bogdan reforms in the defence system of Georgia. After the meeting,in the defence sphere between Georgia and Turkey. The bilateral Klich. The delegations of the both countries also held meetings NATO’s top military official took a tour of the Krtsanisi Nationalmilitary cooperation between Georgia and Turkey covers a wide with each other. The main topics during the meetings were the Training Center accompanied by Deputy Chief of the Joint Staff,range of issues, including military education, logistics and issues international peacekeeping missions, the partnership with NATO Colonel Arsen Tsukhishvili.within the military-technical sphere. and the support given to Georgia on the NATO integration path. The NATO general also met with the personnel of 33 Battal- The Georgian Defense Minister expressed his gratitude to his Special attention was paid to the common plans in the frame- ion of III Infantry Brigade, which is currently being prepared toTurkish colleague for the support and practical assistance provid- work of the European Union. rotate the 32nd Battalion servicemen (after 6 months of service)ed by Turkey for the development of the Georgian Armed Forces. According to Minister Klich, these plans will be the main work- in Afghanistan. Jurgen Bornemann had the opportunity to seeBacho Akhalaia expressed hope that Georgian-Turkish coopera- ing topics for Poland during its future presidency of the Europe- the Simulation Center located at the Krtsanisi Training Base.tion will continue in the future as well. an Union. “You know that Georgia enjoys full support of Poland “I am visiting Georgia at a very interesting time when the re- Bacho Akhalaia was accompanied by a delegation from the on its NATO integration path. Next year Poland will take up the lationship between Georgia and the North Atlantic Treaty Orga-Georgian Defense Ministry on an official visit to Turkey. On 10- role of the rotating presidency of the Council of the European nization is entering a new stage. I am visiting Georgia in order to12 May, Turkey hosted the 10th International Defense Industry Union. Georgia will have the full support in this direction as well. take part in the Annual Defence Conference tomorrow where theFair 2011 (IDEF-11). The event was organized under the auspices During the meeting today, we discussed all the above-mentioned Georgian authorities represent their first findings of their Nation-and support of the Ministry of National Defense and under the important issues. The main topics of discussion were the NATO- al Defence review and I am very much looking forward to listen-management and responsibility of the Turkish Armed Forces Foun- led ISAF operation and strengthening [our] cooperation in the ing to how Georgia is developing its own armed forces. Of course,dation. The 10th International Defense Industry Fair was attended military educational field between Georgia and Poland,” declared I am also here to discuss the status of cooperation between Geor-by 621 local and foreign companies and company representatives the Polish defense minister. gia and NATO. I can tell you and report to you that we had a veryfrom 48 countries, some of which are leaders in the defence indus- Representatives of the Polish and Georgian defense ministries successful year in 2010 where a lot of cooperation activities hadtry. In addition to companies, 84 delegations visited the fair in- agreed to deepen relations in the military education field. The been implemented and we are looking very much forward to con-cluding 419 foreign delegation members from 70 countries. Among Georgian defense minister offered to help his counterpart pre- tinuing this cooperation with Georgia this year. Of course, that isguests were ministers, chiefs of armed forces and high-level mili- pare the personnel of the Polish Armed Forces in Sachkhere the reason why we are here in the training centre. One of thetary and civilian officials. The event is the best place to exchange Mountain Training School in autumn. This school has been award- focuses of cooperation between NATO and Georgia is the partic-views and the best opportunity to establish important business con- ed the status of a Partnership for Peace Program Centre. Bogdan ipation of the Georgian Armed Forces in the NATO-led ISAFnections. The international exhibition is also an important plat- Klich offered to send an expert to the National Defence Acade- operation in Afghanistan. It is a great pleasure for me to considerform for the development of regional cooperation within the mili- my of Georgia next year who to deliver a course on the peace- that Georgia has sent troops to this NATO-led operation. Georgiatary industry. The participants have an opportunity to get the new- keeping missions. is the second largest non-NATO contributor and with this, Geor-est information about technological achievements and programs. The Georgian defense ministry delegation held meetings with gia is supporting the NATO operation in Afghanistan in a veryThey also have the opportunity to view the latest modern military members of the National Defense Committee in the Sejm and the efficient and excellent manner,” said the General Director of in-equipment and armaments. head of the National Security Bureau of the Republic of Poland. ternational Military Staff in an interview with journalists.
  3. 3. 2011 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 3 Official Visits Visit of Bulgarian Chief of Defence Chief of Defence of Bulgaria General Simeon Simeonov paid a three-day official visit to Georgia. On June 21 Chief of Joint Staff Visit of James Appathurai of Georgian Armed Forces Major-General Devi Chankotadze held On an official visit to Georgia, James Appathurai, the NATO a meeting with General Simeonov along with the delegation mem-Secretary General’s Special Representative for the South Cauca- ber of the General Staff of the Republic of Bulgaria. Within the Speech of NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussensus and Central Asia met with the Defense Minister Bacho Akhalaia meeting the Georgian and Bulgarian counterparts discussed issues and the Georgian Defence Minister Bachana Akhalaia at the home-on April 7. Topics of discussion at the meeting were Georgia’s con- over the ongoing reforms and cooperation perspectives in defence coming ceremony of the Georgian servicemen who served in ISAFtribution to the NATO-led ISAF peacekeeping mission in Afghan- sphere. The sides expressed their willingness and readiness to shareistan, the preparation for the Berlin Ministerial, the ongoing re- experience in military education. Later Chief of Defence of Bul- Minister, Excellencies, soldiers, ladies and gentlemen, I am veryforms in the Defense Ministry and the various activities carried garia paid tribute to the honor of the heroes fallen in the war for honored to have the opportunity to say a few words at this ceremonyout within the framework of the NATO- Georgia partnership. James the territorial integrity of Georgia and decorated the memorial of to welcome back from Afghanistan the brave soldiers of the 33rd lightAppathurai held meetings with the Georgian Minister of Foreign the heroes with wreath at Mukhatgverdi Military cemetery. The infantry battalion.Affairs Grigol Vashadze and Vice-Premier Giorgi Baramidze. He delegation from the Republic of Bulgaria visited the squadron in For many years Georgia has been a major contributor to our com-also visited Ivane Javakhishvili State University where he met stu- Marneuli region as well. mon effort to ensure that Afghanistan will never again be a safe ha-dents and academic personnel. Within the official visit, NATO’s ven for terrorists and official also met with Giga Bokeria, the Head of the National Nearly a thousand Georgian troops are serving in Afghanistan to-Security Council and members of the Georgian Parliament. day. They are doing a great job. And you, members of the 33rd light infantry battalion have done a great job. Your duties in Helmand prov- ince were particularly demanding but you met that challenge suc- cessfully and displayed considerable courage. You are not only a credit to your battalion and your brigade, but you are a credit to your entire country. The Georgian government has announced its intention to make a further engagement for our common effort. Once those troops are in place Georgia will be the largest non NATO contributor. For a coun- try of just over 4.5 million people that is an enormous achievement. And it is the contribution for which all NATO is extremely grateful. We’re now entering a crucial period in our engagement in Afghan- James Stavridis Visited Georgia istan. We have broken the momentum of the insurgency. The transi- NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Europe Admiral James tion of our security responsibilities to the Afghans is on track to be Stavridis paid a two-day official visit to Georgia. The U.S. Admi- completed by the end of 2014. And you have all been the key part of ral visited the Georgian Defence Ministry August 25. The NATO the progress we have made. We will continue to stand by the Afghan Commander was received by the Minister of Defence of Georgia people throughout transaction and beyond. Bacho Akhalaia. Defence Minister briefed the NATO’s Supreme We will continue helping them to establish the country as stable, Allied Commander Europe about the ongoing reforms in defence peaceful and increasingly prosperous member of the international sphere. At the meeting the sides discussed Georgia’s participation community of nations. And I am confident that Georgia will be the in ISAF (International Security Assistance Forces) operation. As part of this continuing commitment. Admiral James Stavridis declared after the meeting, he is very proud Afghanistan is a very demanding mission for all our nations and of the Georgian soldiers who are taking part in ISAF operation. “I for all our militaries. But it is also a vitally important mission for the am very happy to be here today in Tbilisi, in Georgia to say thank security of all our nations and that of all our citizens. you to the Republic of Georgia for the outstanding participation in Your service in Afghanistan is also vitally important in another Afghanistan. We are very proud of the soldiers from Georgia who way. It makes the personnel of the Georgian Armed Forces better have fought alongside the rest of the NATO coalition,” declared prepared to work alongside their colleagues from NATO in other mis- Stavridis. “Admiral Stavridis is NATO’s highest ranking military sions too, and this is a key part of your countries preparations for The UK Defence officer and at the same time the Commander of the United States NATO membership. So you have not only Afghanistan standing on European Command. We discussed the ISAF operation and Geor- its own feet, but also help Georgia to move closer to Alliance mem- Minister Visits Georgia gia’s participation in the mission. You are aware of the fact that bership. And this is one more reason for you to be very proud of what The Defense Minister of the United Kingdom for International Georgia is not only one of the largest but also one of the most you have accomplished.Security Strategy, Gerald Howarth paid an official visit to Georgia important contributors to the operation,” declared Defence Minis- Let me thank each and everyone of you in the 33rd light infantryon June 6. The main purpose of his visit to Georgia was to strengthen ter Akhalaia after the meeting. battalion once again for your outstanding contribution to the progressrelations within the defence sphere between the two countries. The of our common endeavor in Afghanistan. And let me close by payingUnited Kingdom’s minister for international security strategy held tribute to the Georgian soldiers who have paid the highest price inmeeting with Georgian Defense Minister Bacho Akhalaia. During that endeavor. We must make sure and we will make sure that theirthe meeting, both sides focused on the existing security situation sacrifice has not been in the region, Georgia’s integration to NATO and the ongoing re-forms in the defence sphere. In the framework of the official visit, Defence Minister Bacho AkhalaiaGerald Howarth also met with the First Deputy Defense MinisterNodar Kharshiladze and the leadership of MoD and Joint Staff of Dear Mr. Secretary-General and distinguished guests,the Georgian Armed Forces. He also visited the NATO-Georgia I have the honor to welcome you and the members of North-At-Professional Development Program (PDP) Center and held meet- lantic Council in Georgia. So I am pinning my hopes to the fact thatings with the program manager and participants. the aforementioned visit will be another step forward in the deepen- After the meeting Gerald Howarth made a statement for the ing of NATO-Georgia “I am delighted to be visiting Tbilisi and to reaffirm my I reckon that our soldiers have contributed a lot in the way of thecountry’s support for Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations. The UK mission’s accomplishment and that they have fulfilled their duties tocontinues to provide Georgia with assistance to make the neces- the highest level. At the same time, they are procuring a lot of experi-sary reforms for NATO membership. Therefore, I am pleased to Secretary of the U.S. Navy Ray Mabus ence by which they are strengthening the Georgian Armed Forces.announce today that the UK will provide a new full-time security We have already conducted the fourth rotation under the US Com-defense advisor, who will work within Georgia’s Ministry of De- at the Defence Ministry mand and right now we are in the middle of pre-deployment exercis-fence. Georgia remains an important friend of the United King- Secretary of the U.S. Navy Ray Mabus paid a two-day official es. As you should be aware, in the year to come, another battaliondom. We fight alongside each other in Afghanistan and I want to visit to Georgia. Secretary of the U.S. Navy was hosted by the will take part in the ISAF mission from Georgia.personally thank the people of Georgia for the sacrifices made in Georgian Defence Minister Bacho Akhalaia on November 18. At In parallel with the operations conducted by NATO, we are forcedpursuit of global peace and stability”. The basic field of coopera- the meeting the Georgian Defence Minister briefed the American to be acting in a very heavy and grave security settings, which is verytion with Great Britain is educational sphere. Within the frame of official about the ongoing defence reforms in Georgia. U.S. – Geor- demanding in terms of the fact that we have to proceed with the re-British Military Advisory Training Team (BMATT) Georgian in- gian bilateral cooperation in defence sphere, Georgia’s NATO in- covery from the damages inflicted by the August War and on the oth-structors undergo annual training on the international peacekeep- tegration prospects and Georgia’s participation in ISAF (Interna- er hand, we have to continue the transformation of the defence operations issues in Military Academy in Viskovo (Czech Re- tional Security Assistance Force) were the topics of discussion at And finally, I’d like one more time to emphasize that participationpublic). The representatives of the Georgian Defence Ministry are the meeting. Secretary of the U.S. Navy Ray Mabus visited the by Georgia in the activities of the alliance is another manifestationalso able to undergo command and staff, English language and Krtsanisi National Training Center and attended the military train- that Georgia is ready to become a full- fledged member of the Northinternational relations training courses in Great Britain. ings of the Georgian and U.S. military servicemen. Atlantic Alliance.
  4. 4. 4 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 2011 On the 26th of May, Independence Military Parade 2011 comprises 297 students. It fully com-Day was officially announced by the plies with international standards and therecorded voice of the prominent Geor- cadets enjoy free medical service, ade-gian poet Akaki Tsereteli. quate messing, various kinds of uni- The military parade, which was ded- forms, as well as school equipment.icated to Georgia’s Independence Day, Along with the general educational pro-was commanded by the Chief of Joint gram, they are intensively familiarizingStaff of the Georgian Armed Forces themselves with military life and under-(GAF), Maj.-Gen. Devi Chankotadze. go rigorous physical preparation. Before the appearance of the Su- The march was continued by the mil-preme Commander-in-Chief of the itary personnel of the Joint Staff andGeorgian Armed Forces Mikheil Land Forces Command.Saakashvili, the Chief of Joint Staff of They were followed by military per-the GAF gave the command for readi- sonnel from the Training and Militaryness for the military parade. He then re- Education Command. Military units ofported to the Supreme Commander-in- the Land Forces also marched at theChief that the military personnel were Parade. Parade was led by the command-lined-up, and then the president and the ers of military units of the I Infantryarmy greeted one another. Upon receiv- Brigade, II Infantry Brigade, III Infan-ing the order, Georgia’s military person- try Brigade, IV Infantry Brigade, Sepa-nel took “at ease” position. There was a rate Light Infantry Battalion, I Artilleryminute of silence and then the president Brigade, II Artillery Brigade, Engineer-began his speech… By the end of the ing Brigade, Separate Communicationspeech, the president granted “Brilliance Battalion, aviation sub-units of landAwards” to the following people: forces, National Guard and special op- eration forces. 1. Rusudan Petviashvili Order was awarded to After the oath-taking ceremony, the nel were carrying the flags of the Geor- The parade also featured various 2. Vakhtang Machavariani Corporal Sadghobelashvili Ilia Georgian National Anthem was per- gian state and various branches of the types of armored vehicles, among them 3. Tariel Chanturia 1st Lieutenant Tsirdava Tengiz formed. The anthem was sung by Geor- Georgian Armed Forces. The column a new armored vehicle “Didgori” that 4. Rezo Gabriadze and Major Kutkhashvili Slava gian singer Nini Badurashvili and was was manned with personnel from the appeared at the military parade for the 5. Otar Zurabishvili accompanied by the Defence Ministry’s ceremonial company. first time, also Hammer Type Armored 6. Natela Zhordania For the first time in the history of military band. The standard-bearers were followed Vehicle, Armored Vehicle “Cobra”, Ar- 7. Rejeb Zhordania military parades and within the frame- The commander of the military pa- by the students of the Cadets Military mored Vehicle “Wolf”, Armored-Vehi- 8. Tamar Chkhenkeli work of the formal ceremony, the grad- rade gave instructions concerning the Lyceum, who took part in the military cle, Armored Vehicle “Ejder”, Artillery 9. Gogita Vashadze uates of the National Defence Academy parade that meant the regrouping of per- parade for the first time. The Cadets System “MTSA”, Artillery System “Gi- 10. David Sakvarelidze took the military oath. Ninety-four grad- sonnel, giving them direction of move- Military Lyceum started functioning in atsint”, self-propelled artillery system 11. David Lortkipanidze uates, only one woman among them, ment and the keeping of distance. The the beginning of the current academic “DANA” Multiple Rocket Launcher 12. Arvidas Sabonis knelt down and swore the oath of alle- standard-bearers started moving in a year (September 13, 2010). The educa- “RM-70. 13. Tamar Kvesitadze giance. After the ceremony, they were straight line and the rest to the right. tional institution was formally unveiled The parade was wrapped up by over 14. Mamuka Gvaramia granted the rank of Lieutenant. After the The military parade was opened by by the president of Georgia. The idea of flight of various types of aviation: Heli- 15. Genadi Qachibaia military parade, they will continue serv- the column of standard-bearers led by the reestablishment of the Cadets Lyce- copter UH-1H, Helicopter MI-8, Heli- ing in the various units of the Georgian Deputy-Chief-of-Staff of the GAF, Col. um belongs to Mikheil Saakashvili. copter MI-24, High Performance Jet “L- The Vakhtang Gorgasali III Rank Armed Forces. Arsen Tsukhishvili. The military person- Right now, the Cadets Military Lyceum 39”, Jet Aircraft SU-25.
  5. 5. 2011 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 5 “Didgori” “Didgori” is a newly created be mounted on the Georgian ultra-modern equipment and equipped with a night vision de-vehicle, just a few days old, Didgori. At this stage, two kinds communications systems. The vice with a full rotation of 360ºthough as its Georgian manufac- of vehicles are created. One is crew inside the vehicle can use and an optical zoom X36. Theturers say, it is already experi- smaller with more maneuver- the internal radio communica- combat vehicle is equipped withenced. The Didgori combat ve- ability and another is larger in tion (i.e. contact the driver and a 10 watt Harris radio systemhicle has been designed by Geor- size. 7.62 mm “MINIGUN” sys- commander) within 5 km radi- that enables the crew to commu-gians after a thorough study of tems also called “Volcanos” nicate within 11 km radius.comparable models throughout which provide a high rate of fire It is possible to install vari-the world. After its design, it was ous kinds of systems that willtested according to international make the Georgian Didgori morestandards. Before its final forma- effective.tion, several test models were The intelligence vehicle hascreated. They were tested ac- additional hatches; so the crewcording to various param- can open fire without leav-eters and the armor protec- ing the vehicle.tion has also been checked “This vehicle satisfiesseveral times. The Didgori the requirements of sol-combat vehicle is a multi- diers. It is fast and mo-function armored person- bile. The main demandnel carrier that can also be from our side, from sol-used for intelligence purpos- diers with regard to mil-es, convoy operations and mov- itary equipment is theing on a battlefield. The Didgori security parameters. Inis very maneuverable and fast, this case, the level of se-so it is very useful for Special curity is considered to beForces. According to informa- at the highest level. The majortion provided by its constructors, advantage of Didgori is that it isit is more protected than required Georgian! It is produced in Geor-by NATO STANAG II. This gia and it makes us feel proud,class provides protection from as well as its name!” – Aleko7.62/54 type armor penetrable Gorgadze, Master Sergeant of IVbullets, although the exact pa- Infantry Brigade.rameters of armor is kept secret. “Experience and views of theAs for the bottom armor, it is cre- Georgian soldiers, also, the prin-ated with the “sandwich” multi- ciples of projecting and design-layer system. It has three layers. servicemen. quality, hardness, etc. For the ing have been considered whileThe middle layer provides the · Speed – average speed most part, the armor of the creating this vehicle. This haspossibility to keep off the blast 100-120 km/h Didgori is innovative, and the happened for the first time inwave in case of mine explosion. · Fuel capacity – enables it idea belongs entirely to Georgian Georgia” – Zviad Tsikolia.The other two layers protect the to cover 500 km constructors. The creation of in- Production of its own militarycrew from fragmentation. The (12, 000 to 15, 000 rounds per · Weight – 7 tons novative armor enabled the us. The vehicle is equipped with equipment is very important fortires are armored as well. Each minute) are mounted on one of · Designer of “Didgori-1” is Georgian constructors to design thermal cameras that enable the any country. Compared to pro-tire can resist up to ten shots. It them and a 12.7 mm machine- a famous car designer Zviad the Didgori in a way to make its crew to move with its search- curement, production is finan-has an extra layer of protection. gun is mounted on the other. Tsikolia weight 30% lighter compared to lights turned off and at the same cially beneficial. The mainte-Even if the tire is damaged, the The constructors considered similar vehicles. In addition, its time remain undetected by ene- nance in- place is also faster andvehicle can cover 50-60 kilome- · Crew – “Didgori 1” – 8+1 the technology that exists in the armor is firmer than the rest of my forces. The telescope system requires fewer finances. It can beters at the speed of 80km/h. Sev- (machine-gunner), “Didgori 2” – armor industry of the world, the vehicles of the same class. can also be mounted on the back freely counted as one more ad-eral types of weapon systems can 6+1 (machine-gunner) military namely, mine resistance, armor The Didgori is equipped with platform of the vehicle. It is vantage of Didgori.
  6. 6. 6 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 2011 Georgian Contingent on ISAF Mission principle, new company joins the NATO-led security operation in Afghan- istan every 6 months. Defence Minister awarded the Georgian Each Georgian Peace Company, go- ing to deploy in Afghanistan, went military servicemen for participation in through training courses at the Sach- khere Mountain-Training School in full international peacekeeping mission compliance with NATO standards for two weeks. During the trainings the Georgian Armed Forces were specially prepared for counterinsurgency opera- tions. Since April 2010, a total of 750 ser- vicemen of 31st Infantry Battalion of III Infantry Brigade of GAF were sent to the province of Helmand, the south province of Afghanistan. The Georgian peace contingent was carrying out there a full spectrum of security operations side by side with the US military forc- es. During November 2010, the 31st Battalion, been deployed in Afghani- stan, was rotated by the 32nd Battalion of III Infantry Brigade. Since April 2011, the 33rd Battalion had per- An award ceremony for military servicemen of the III Infantry Brigade of the formed a peacekeeping mission in the Georgian Armed Forces was held in Kutaisi on July 6. “For participation in the Afghan province of Helmand. After six international peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan”, service and state rewards months of service, in November 2011, were granted to the 32nd Battalion and Infantry Company personnel who had 749 military servicemen of 31st Bat- participated in the ISAF mission. The Defence Minister of Georgia, Bacho Akhala- talion of III Infantry Brigade replaced ia, the leadership of GAF and the son of Colonel Ramaz Gogishvili, who had 33rd Battalion step by step. The Geor- died in Afghanistan, awarded the soldiers. gian peacekeeping battalion is perform- 1,019 military servicemen received medals for participating in the international ing the security mission in Afghanistan mission. Four soldiers were awarded the Vakhtang Gorgasali III rank order, and as part of the US military contingent. 122 military servicemen were rewarded with the state and service medals. It is already a second rotation for the 31st battalion personnel, who are char- Hohenfels. They were instructed in de- Besides, since April, 2011 Georgian Georgia is one of the largest con- tors have been performing peace mis- acterized with a high level of combat fence, searching, cordon, convoy, military instructors have been carryingtributors per capita to the ISAF mili- sion in the province integrated in the preparation and experience. evacuation operations as well as in out peacekeeping mission in Kandahartary operation ongoing under the aegis Lithuanian contingent reconstruction The above-mentioned battalions skills of communication with leaders province, Afghanistan as part of theof NATO in Afghanistan. Initially, up group by 6 months rotation. have undergone 6 month intensive and population they will have to in- French peace 50 military servicemen were de- Since November 2009, first Georgian training in the Krtsanisi Training Cen- teract with during the mission. Geor- Participation in international peace-ployed in the peacekeeping mission in peacekeeping company was deployed in tre under the guidance of Expedition- gian soldiers‘ preparedness level to keeping missions provides Georgian2004, whose main duty there was to Kabul, Afghanistan to accomplish the ary Brigade of US Marine Corps. The engage in particular peace support op- soldiers with an opportunity to obtaininsure security during local presiden- mission there as a part of the French Battalion personnel have also gone erations in Afghanistan was positive- practical combat experience and to dem-tial elections. Afterwards, from No- peace contingent at the military base through preparation in the US Joint ly evaluated by both the Centre’s ex- onstrate the country’s readiness to co-vember 2009, in the town of Ghor prov- “Warehouse” of the Regional Com- Multinational Readiness Centre perts and Trainers and Advisors Group operate with NATO and its partnerince, Chaghcharan, the Georgian doc- mand’s HQs. According to the rotation (JMRC) based in the German city of of US Marines. states‘armed forces.
  7. 7. 2011 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 7 Letter by General David H. Petraeus to Georgian Defence Minister Bachana Akhalaia Your forces have been very success- ful in partnering with the Afghan Na- tional Security Force and with local Af- ghan Government leaders. Together they have conducted numerous operations and implemented many initiatives to increase security and stability. Your troopers’ effective interactions with the Afghan people have led to increased Hollywood movie star Tom Cruise visited Georgian military servicemen at the military confidence in both ISAF and GIRoA hospital in Germany. During the visit the military hospital Tom Cruise took a security forces. As an example, the area memorable photo with private of the 33rd Battalion of the 3rd Infantry Brigade where they operate is southern Musa Akhmed Saparov. The 33rd Battalion of the 3rd Infantry Brigade, where private Qaleh is now patrolled on foot, result- Saparov serves, has already left Afghanistan and been rotated by the 31st Battalion. Private Saparov will return to Georgia after the first course of his treatment ing in better relationships with the Af- ghan people. Your troopers are truly cou- rageous in conducting these foot patrols, which place them at greater risk of in- surgent attacks. Much of the credit for improved se- curity in southern Musa Qaleh is attrib- utable to the outstanding leadership of your battalion commanders: Lieutenant Colonel Phridoni Tereladze and Major Alexander Tugushi. Both possesses su- perior knowledge of their areas of oper- ation, maintain good discipline of their forces, and plan sound operations to re- duce the insurgents’ influence on the people. Major General Richard Mills, Com- mander of Regional Command-South- west, has been very pleased with the leadership of both the 31st and 32nd Battalions. He informed me that your troopers are motivated and disciplined, Hollywood Film Star and a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Angelina Jolie visited Georgian military servicemen in and that they approach their mission the military hospital in Germany. Georgian peacekeepers served under the US peace with a positive attitude. Other favorable contingent in Helmand province within the ISAF (International Security Assistance comments about your troops have been Force) peacekeeping mission echoed up and down the levels of com- mand, reinforcing their well-earned reputation as tough, smart, and profes- sional. Thanks again, for your Nation’s com- mitment to the Afghan people and the campaign here. I look forward to con- tinuing our work together to help the Afghanistan Government provide a more secure and prosperous future for its people. Very respectfully, His Excellency Bachana Akhalaia and 32nd (November 2010-present) David H. Petraeus, Georgian Battalions have been integral General, United States Army Com- Dear Excellency, to the growing success of our efforts mander I greatly appreciate your Nation’s to improve security and stability, spe- International Security Assistancecontributions to the NATO ISAF mis- cifically in Nimruz and Helmand Force / United States Forces-Afghani-sion. The 31st (April-November 2010) Provinces. stan The first lady of the United States Michelle Obama visited the injured Georgian military servicemen who were transferred to the German Hospital from Helmand On June 9 during the NATO Defence Ministerial in Brussels Georgia’s Minister of Defence, Bacho Akhalaia and David Petraeus, the Commander of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) discussed the decision to send an additional Georgian battalion to Commander of the US Marine Corps General James Amos and Sergeant Major of the US Afghanistan. Bacho Akhalaia and David Petraeus also talked about the possibility of establishing a NATO- standard regional training Marine Corps Carlton Kent visited Georgian serviceman Alika Gitolendia, who was facility. General Petraeus welcomed the initiative to set up a facility that would provide pre-deployment training for international wounded in Afghanistan. Corporal of the 31st Battalion Gitolendia exploded on the IED operations (improvised explosive device) during his service in ISAF Mission
  8. 8. 8 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 2011 Georgian Defence Conference Georgian State Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, Mr. Gior- gi Baramidze. In his opening remarks the minister spoke about the significance of the meeting. The Chairman of the Civil Council on Defence and Security, Mr. Erekle Mchedlishvili, highlighted the transparency and active participation of public society in the ongoing process- es in the defence sphere. In his speech, NATO General Direc- tor of the International Military Staff, Lieutenant General Jurgen Bornemann Defence Minister discussed such topics as NATO’s new functions, current challenges and future vision after the Lisbon Summit, as well the importance of the ISAF operation attended NATO meeting and Georgia’s participation in the mis- Bacho Akhalaia, Georgia’s Defence stan to assist the local military to be sion. Minister attended the NATO Defence able to take control of the security sit- One of the major topics for the con- Ministerial Meeting of the North At- uation on the ground.” ference was Georgia’s new reserve sys- lantic Council (NAC) in NATO HQ, In an interview with the media, tem and issues concerning civil defence. Brussels, on March 10-11. The meet- Grigol Mgaloblishvili, Georgian Am- The Deputy Head of J-5, a division of ing was opened by the NATO Secre- bassador to NATO, also underlined the the Joint Staff of Georgia, Lieutenant tary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen. importance of sending instructors to The Georgian Defence Conference the Lisbon Summit, global security chal- Colonel Omar Begoidze, and member The meeting was open to non-Nato Afghanistan: “The decision to send anheld in February in the city of Batumi, lenges, defence reforms, the Georgian of the parliamentary opposition, Nick ISAF-contribution nations, and saw de- additional military contingent is verylike its predecessors, sought to give in- reserve system and defence transforma- Laliashvili, shared their opinions on the fence ministers from across the Afghan important. This spring, 11 instructorsterested parties the opportunity to dis- tion and transparency. An emphasis was issue. Major General William T. Nes- mission discuss ways of securing sta- will be deployed in Afghanistan, andcuss the existing security environment made on the new reserve and civil de- bitt made an interesting presentation on bility in the war-torn country and out- as for the [further 9 instructors] we arein Georgia and the ongoing defence re- fence systems, and the Strategic Review the American reserve system. line plans for the future. in the process of dealing with someforms in its armed forced. At the Forum, Document renewed by Georgian De- The fifth panel of the conference dis- At the opening of the meeting, Ras- technical details,” said the Ambassador.organized by the Georgian Defence fence Ministry, which reports on cussed defence transparency and the mussen offered his condolences to the The Defence Minister held individ-Ministry, a wide range of delegations progress on aspects of national security public’s contribution to the security de- families and loved ones of the ISAF and ual meetings with his British, Bulgari-from Georgia and foreign countries were relating to defence, and outlines the cision-making process. Afghan soldiers who have been killed an and other foreign colleagues withingiven the opportunity to hold open dis- Georgian Armed Forces plans for devel- The UK Special Defence Advisor to or injured in Afghanistan. He told those the framework of the Ministerial.cussions on new challenges in the glo- opment up to 2015. the Georgian Defence Ministry, Mr. in attendance that it is thanks to the Participants at the meeting discussedbal security sphere. Delegates at the conference had a Steven Glover, presented his vision of courage and selfless sacrifice of those the new security challenges arising from The conference has become a year- good opportunity to discuss not only British defence and security, and how it who have lost their lives, that consid- the situation in Libya and the longer-ly tradition, and the number of dele- Georgian defence issues, but also broad- related to the Georgian strategic review erable progress has been achieved by term prospects for the Middle East. Ingates attending the event has grown er security questions. The Vice-Minis- document. The Head of the Planning and the coalition forces: “We are putting addition to this, the two-day ministerialyear to year. This year, the conference ter of National Defence of Lithuania, Analysis Department of the Chamber of great pressure on the insurgency and meeting also saw a new concept on Cy-was proud to welcome distinguished, Vytautas Umbrasas told Defence Today: Control of Georgia, Mr. Levan Alapish- are taking away many of the safe ha- ber-Security approved by the delegation.high-ranking representatives from “I feel that this conference was very use- vili, concluded the conference themati- vens that they have relied upon. This Ministers also took crucial steps to-NATO, the USA and other partner ful and very positive. I hope, as I heard cally, reviewing issues related to the has helped to create a safer and more wards the implementation of “Transi-countries, as well as members of the from the [Georgian] Deputy Defence state budget and defence reforms. secure environment in many parts of tion” - the process by which securitydiplomatic corps. The list of the guests Minister, it will continue to become a The Georgian Defence Conference Afghanistan. Our strategy is working”, responsibility for Afghanistan is beingat the Conference also included repre- larger, broader and deeper event every 2011, held in Batumi, will be remem- declared Rasmussen. He thanked the gradually transferred to Afghan lead-sentatives from Georgian governmen- year. I hope that next year will also have bered for the attendance of many high- Afghan national security forces for ership. As a result of the meeting, thetal and non-governmental agencies, the many good speakers, meetings and op- ranking dignitaries, interesting discus- their close partnership and confirmed Afghan government will now decide onparliamentary majority and opposition portunities to discuss important securi- sion, the sharing of experiences and that they are ready to gradually assume the areas in which the transition pro-parties, and independent experts in the ty questions. It is very important for planning for the future. The conference the lead responsibility for the security gram will be implemented. Transitiondefence and security sphere. Georgia, and for the region, and maybe is one more step forward for Georgia in of their nation and their people. will commence only once it has been Within the framework of the two-day for other regions as well,” Umbrasas terms of deepening regional and inter- Minister of Defence of Georgia, Ba- approved by the Afghan governmentconference, a range of important issues explained. national cooperation in the security cho Akhalaia also delivered speech at and announced by President Karzai.were discussed, including NATO after The conference was opened by the sphere. the meeting. Mr. Akhalaia briefed the The Ministers also discussed and audience on the state of Georgia’s par- agreed upon the principles by which NATO Defence Ministerial in Brussels ticipation in the operation and the coun- try’s future plans in this regard. Geor- gia continues to be fully committed to Transition will be implemented. They emphasized the fact that Transition is not an event but a process, and that it Georgian Defence Minister Bacho ISAF mission with 929 highly profes- signifies a gradual shift to a genuineAkhalaia attended the NATO Defence sional soldiers currently deployed on supporting role as Afghan NationalMinisterial meeting. The North Atlantic the ground in Afghanistan. While ad- Security Forces (ANSF) capabilitiesCouncil (NAC) met at the level of de- dressing the audience, the Minister re- develop. The Ministers, who werefence ministers in Brussels, NATO HQ ferred to prospects for future coopera- joined by Afghan Defence Ministeron June 8-9. Within the framework of the tion. He underscored the fact that the Abdul Rahim Wardak, welcomed theNATO Defence Ministerial, the meeting ISAF conference was taking place progress achieved with regard to theof the North Atlantic Council has been against a background of a period of strengthening of the ANSF, who areheld in the NATO HQ with non-NATO transition within Afghanistan, and dis- increasingly taking the lead in jointISAF contributing Nations. Throughout cussed the coalition’s preparation of operations. Ministers expressed theirthe meeting, defence ministers dealt with Afghan national security forces: “As shared goal of seeing the ANSF take thethe ways of securing stability in Afghan- you know we are planning to send up lead and conduct security operations inistan and set out the future plans. to 20 artillery instructors to Afghani- all provinces by the end of 2014. The defence meetings of the NAC atthe level of defence ministers wereopened by the NATO Secretary Gener- Georgian Defence andal, Anders Fogh Rasmussen. He beganhis opening remarks by paying tributeto the ISAF and Afghan forces that have Security Conferencebeen killed or injured in Afghanistan. The 48 NATO and ISAF defence retary General, Anders Fogh Rasmus- The Georgian Defence and Security ing two days the conference participants“Afghanistan remains our largest oper- ministers reaffirmed their long-term sen. As part of this process, ministers Conference opened at the “Radisson Blu discussed important issues such as theation and our key operational priority. commitment to Afghanistan which re- have agreed to work together with the Iveria” Hotel on October 27. Georgian NATO Agenda from Lisbon to Chicago,And we are making progress, in partic- mains NATO’s top operational priority. Afghan authorities to define the relation- and international representatives dis- Georgia’s NATO membership perspec-ular in the areas of transition, training, Ministers were updated on the opera- ship between NATO-ISAF and Afghan- cussed the new challenges within the glo- tives, the Black Sea Region within theand enabling the Afghans to take the tional situation from the Commander of istan after the transition is complete in bal security sphere, the ongoing defence Euro Atlantic security dimension, thelead,” NATO Secretary General said. ISAF, General David Petraeus, who ex- 2014 and in order to reassure the Af- reforms in Georgia and the achieved challenges of the security sphere, the on-According to Rasmussen, the Taliban are plained how progress against the insur- ghans of our long-term commitment to progress at the conference organized by going reforms in the Georgian defenceunder pressure everywhere, including gency was enabling the transition to their country. This work will help clari- the Ministry of Defence of Georgia. The sphere, the main trends in military edu-their former strongholds in Helmand and Afghans to start leading in seven dis- fy the likely evolution of security-sup- conference is an important forum for dis- cation, the view of civil society and itsKandahar provinces. Secretary General tricts and provinces in July, as planned. port to Afghanistan for the years to cussion of defence and security issues. contributions, democratic control and itsRasmussen took the opportunity on be- “Transition is based on conditions, come. The Georgian governmental and non- existing challenges and the way ahead forhalf of the ISAF family to thank outgo- not the calendar. But I am confident that In the framework of the NATO De- governmental organizations, the parlia- the ISAF ISAF Commander General David we can complete our handover of secu- fence Ministerial, the Georgian defence mentary majority, representatives from Along with the forum, Georgian De-Petraeus for his dedicated service and rity to the Afghans by the end of 2014. minister held bilateral meetings with his opposition parties, experts, high ranking fence Minister Bacho Akhalaia and Viceextraordinary leadership. He thanked This does not mean we are heading for foreign counterparts. The meeting was officials from international organizations, Prime Minister of Georgia and Statethe General for showing firm commit- the exit. Our commitment to Afghani- held with the Commander of Interna- the defence counterparts of partner coun- Minister for European and Euro-Atlan-ment to the Alliance and the ISAF mis- stan will endure beyond that through our tional Security Assistance Force (ISAF) tries and the diplomatic corps accredited tic Integration Giorgi Baramidze heldsion. long-term partnership”- said NATO Sec- David Petraeus. to Georgia attended the conference. Dur- bilateral meetings with foreign visitors.
  9. 9. 2011 MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT OF GEORGIA TODAY 9 Cadets Military Lyceum the Lyceum; these include fire, tacti- The Cadets Military Lyceum is a cal, engineer, physical and drilling kind of boarding house providing the preparation, topography-navigation, cadets with adequate accommodation, first medical aid, humanitarian law on nutrition, medical service and text- armed conflicts and military history. books. Upon graduation the students In order to achieve an effective edu- will be awarded with certificates of sec- cational process, seven departments in ondary education. each curriculum have been created in The Lyceum offers the best work- the Cadets Military Lyceum. ing environment, based on a secure, in- teractive and respectful relationship The Cadets Military Lyceum began examinations, only 618 perspective among the personnel which is insuredits new academic year on September students made it to the final entrance by the set structure of the Lyceum.15. The military institution began the phase. Out of 618 applicants, 110 The Cadets self-governance bodyacademic year with several new inno- students were selected on the basis is also functioning at the Cadets Mili-vations. This year the cadets will study of the testing results, conducted in tary Lyceum and consists of variousa third foreign language (Turkish) two stages - physical preparation and committees – including the Lyceumalong with other standard compulsory logical aptitude skills. For the 2011- administration, the committee of pub-foreign languages (English and Rus- 2012 academic years, a total of 352 lic affairs, as well as sports and esthet-sian). Second and third-year cadets will will receive their education at the ical education. During the academicalso undergo a TOEFEL program. academy. year, cadet Olympiads and creative ed- The period to obtain and submit The educational process at the Ca- ucational conferences also take place.the required documents for entrance dets Military Lyceum is carried out on The goal of the military school is tointo the Lyceum Academy was from the basis of the National Curriculum develop the intellectual, cultural,June 16 to July 4. After successfully developed by the Ministry of Educa- physical and moral features of the ca-finishing the basic educational phase tion and Science and an additional mil- det and to enable the cadet to be able(IX grade) in general educational in- itary program. In parallel with the gen- to easily adapt to social life and en-stitutions, 769 students applied to the eral educational program, additional gage in both the civil and military ser-Lyceum. After undergoing medical military disciplines are also taught at vice of the country. Meeting with the Georgian President On February 25, the Georgian Pres- Minister of Defence Visited Cadets Defence Minister of Georgia ident Mikheil Saakashvili delivered a Bacho Akhalaia visited cadets on speech before the cadets of Military June 30 and attended the field ex- Lyceum and students of National De- ercise. The students of Cadets fence Academy- “for you and any Military Lyceum had been under- Georgian citizen, interested in the fu- going practical field exercise since ture military career, the history of ca- June 19. Along with the comple- dets and their teachers will always re- tion of the training, the 2010-2011 main as a worthy example. And you academic year also finished, after too should become the model for the which summer holidays for the ca- future generation not in the way to dets began at the Lyceum. share their tragic fate, but to create an The cadets were undergoing independent and powerful state”. The the field exercise at the outset. meeting which was organized within They improved their theoretical the framework of “Occupation Week” knowledge by the practical field was attended by the Defence Minister training. During two weeks the Bacho Akhalaia, descendents of the cadets of Military Lyceum were undergoing tactical, marksmanship, engi- Head of the first Georgian Govern- neering and medical preparation along with physical training. They also mas- ment Noe Jhordania and hero cadets tered in communication, military topography and army regulations. Cadets along with Military Lyceum and De- Military Lyceum started its functioning at the beginning of the academic year fence Academy students. 2010 on September 13. Cadets visit Rustaveli Cinema Hall On December 10, students of the Cadets Military Lyceum visited Cadets Visit Defence Academy On December 9, attendees of Cadets to the Defence Ministry. Along with get- Davit Aghmashenebeli National Military Lyceum visited Rustaveli Cine- ting additional information, such initia- Defence Academy. Cadets were ma Hall. The students saw the Georgian tive gives possibility of certain relax- hosted by the freshmen of the De- feature film “Love Story”. Such kind of ation. Every week the students attend fence Academy. They viewed the cognitive-entertaining events are orga- film shows and performances, visit mu- existing infrastructure of the Nation- nized every week. This initiative belongs seums and other places of interest. al Defence Academy – educational and living facilities, conference hall, entertainment center, swimming pool, indoor and outdoor sports grounds and library. Cadets fired from the simulation systems and had supper together with the students of the Defence Academy. They also re- ceived detailed information about the admission requirements and liv- ing and educational standards of the Defence Academy.