President Salome Zurabishvili, who is on an official visit to Lithuania on March 7-8, met today with her Lithuanian counterpart, Dalia Grybauskaitė, and discussed further enhancing ties.
The two presidents spoke of their countries’ bilateral relations, Georgia’s cooperation with European Union and NATO, security situation in the Black Sea region and countering cyber threats.
President Grybauskaitė noted that Georgia has made “huge progress” in EU cooperation, and is “deservedly considered as the leader in Eastern Partnership.” She felt positive of NATO-Georgia relations as well, and reiterated Lithuania’s “firm support” to Georgia’s aspirations to join the Alliance.
The two Presidents spoke also of “Russia’s actions and the tension it created in the Black Sea region,” and its occupation of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia.
“After more than ten years since Russia’s aggression against Georgia, Lithuania firmly supports Georgian sovereignty and territorial integrity and condemns Russia’s creeping occupation,” the Lithuanian President said.
— Dalia Grybauskaitė (@Grybauskaite_LT) March 7, 2019
At a press conference following the meeting, Salome Zurabishvili hailed friendly ties and partnership between the two countries and noted that on its way to EU and NATO integration, Georgia follows Lithuania’s path which it considers “exemplary.”
“Today as never ever before, we need this friendship and support as we have moved to a new stage of relations with EU – where EU is facing its own internal challenges – and we should find our place during this period with support of our friends,” Zurabishvili said.
“We are aware of that a political decision needs to be taken in relations with NATO, but we have significant readiness – will it be military or reform-based that continue and are underway – and we have moved to the most decisive stages,” the Georgian President said.
President Zurabishvili also noted that Georgia and Lithuania – the two small countries of the Black and the Baltic Sea regions – should endure all of their challenges while coexisting alongside “the large economic, political or military powers.”
Tomorrow, Zurabishvili and her Lithuanian counterpart will visit the National Cyber Security Center where the two countries’ Defense Ministers will sign a declaration of intent on cooperation in cyber security.