The meeting of the New Group of Friends of Georgia began today in Warsaw. The main issues in discussion were Georgia's NATO perspective, the European Neighbourhood Policy towards the east, European Union participation in conflict resolution in the Caucasus and Georgia's relations with its neighbours.
According to the Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet, the European Union must pay more attention to the eastern-oriented European Neighbourhood Policy than it has before. "Regional cooperation forms complement the European Neighbourhood Policy and tighten the cooperation between the European Union and its eastern neighbours." At the same time, the eastern dimension should be flexible enough to proceed faster with the countries that are able to.
Paet also assured that Estonia is continually supporting Georgia's Euro-Atlantic integration and Georgia receiving NATO Membership Action Plan as soon as possible, hopefully at the ministerial meeting of the North-Atlantic Council in December, 2008. "The defence reforms in Georgia are progressing and the country is actively contributing to international missions," said the Estonian Foreign Minister and added that Georgia is a trustworthy partner to NATO. Paet reminded that receiving the Membership Action Plan depends greatly on Georgia's own efforts.
The New Group of Friends of Georgia was founded in 2004. Its goal is to help Georgia in its aspirations towards NATO and European Union. The members of the group are Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Sweden.
This time representatives of Slovakia, USA, NATO and European Union also took part of meeting sessions.