3rd South Caucasus Security Forum (SCSF) 2015 and Georgia Defence and Security Conference (GDSC) are underway in the Hotel Holiday Inn Tbilisi. Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili, the members of Government, the representatives of Diplomatic Corps and authoritative foreign and local expert organizations are attending the event.
Minister of Defence Tinatin Khidasheli opened the forum. In her opening address, Minister focused on Georgia`s Euro-Atlantic aspirations and the current challenges-“current and next years are one of the most critical periods for Georgia due to the forthcoming NATO Foreign Ministerial Meeting and NATO Warsaw Summit and our expectations are very optimistic. I think the Summit results will demonstrate once again that NATO Open Door Policy is irreversible process with which the third side will never be able to interfere. I believe there won`t be any barriers between Georgia and NATO this time and the Alliance will state at last that Georgia is ready to enter NATO”.
When delivering the speech at the forum, Prime Minister highlighted the threats faced by Georgia and the ways of overcoming the challenges- “besides the prevailing threats Georgia will become the part of peace and stability building process to bring benefit to its neighbors and to enhance overall stability”. Irakli Garibashvili also highlighted relations with Russia and Georgia`s NATO integration process.
Róbert Ondrejcsák Director of Center for European and North Atlantic Affairs (CENAA) and Kakha Gogolashvili Director of EU Studies at Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies (GFSIS) addressed the forum participants.
The goal of the conference is to share the best practices in defence and security areas and to deepen cooperation. The forum is an important platform to share recommendations, experiences and opinions of partner and friend countries` former and active high ranking officials. Prior to the NATO Foreign Ministerial Meeting and NATO Warsaw Summit, it is extremely important to use this format for open discussions regarding the current challenges posed to Georgia, security policy affairs and NATO integration prospects.
During two days, the conference participants will have the opportunity to discuss the regional and global security affairs like Euro-Atlantic security, information and hybrid warfare, changes in the Middle East, 2016 NATO Warsaw Summit, Black Sea - military balance and cooperation and Ukraine Crisis challenging Europe’s security. A closed session will be held for media representatives as part of the forum.
After unveiling the forum, Minister of Defence referred to the significance of the Conference and reviewed the future plans.
“This is a preliminary stage for the 2016 Defence and Security Conference. Next year Georgia is marking the 25th anniversary of independence and we plan to arrange events and to invite high ranking officials. It will be the kind of messages from Tbilisi prior to the NATO Warsaw Summit as well”, outlined Tinatin Khidasheli.
The event is organized in a joint format for the first time by Ministry of Defence, GFSIS and Slovak Organization -CENAA.