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Foreign Minister Darchiashvili Visits Ireland

The Foreign Minister of Georgia, Ilia Darchiashvili, is on a official visit to Ireland from September 13 to 15 to meet with the Chairman of the Irish Senate, Jerry Buttimer; the Speaker of the Irish Parliament, Seán Ó Fearghaíl; the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defence of Ireland, Vice Prime Minister Micheál Martin; the Minister of State for European Affairs and Defence, Peter Burke; the Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs, Sean Fleming; and the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Daithí de Róiste.

In the course of the visit, Ilia Darchiashvili will also met with representatives of the Georgian diaspora in Ireland. The Foreign Ministry of Georgia’s press release notes that this is the first bilateral official visit of the Foreign Minister of Georgia to Ireland in many years.

Meeting with the Speaker of the Irish Parliament

During his first official visit to Ireland, Georgian Foreign Affairs Minister Ilia Darchiashvili met with Irish Parliament Speaker Seán Ó Fearghaíl on September 14. During the meeting, they discussed the “robust friendship” between Ireland and Georgia and the “positive trend of high-level visits”.

According to the Foreign Ministry’s press release, the discussion primarily focused on Georgia’s European integration. Darchiashvili outlined the country’s EU accession process and government initiatives to meet the European Commission’s 12 recommendations. In response, the Irish Speaker reaffirmed Ireland’s “steadfast support” for Georgia’s EU membership. The sides also addressed regional security challenges and the EU’s role in peace efforts, with the Irish Parliament Chairman expressing strong support for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The meeting concluded with a review of current bilateral cooperation and prospects for further strengthening the relationship.

Meeting with the Chairman of the Irish Senate

Foreign Minister Darchiashvili also met with Irish Senate Chairman Jerry Buttimer. According to the Foreign Ministry, Darchiashvili praised the Irish Parliament’s united stance on Georgia, evident in supporting resolutions and hearings. The Irish Senate members reiterated their support for Georgia’s European integration and offered to share their EU accession experience. Darchiashvili updated them on Georgia’s EU accession progress and the 12 European Commission recommendations.

The sides discussed the geopolitical significance of Georgia gaining candidate status and expressed hope for the recognition in the European Commission’s report. The Friends of Georgia group, whose input in developing the relations between the two countries was highlighted during the meeting. The Chair of the Group Senator Wilson reiterated the Irish parliamentarians’ support for Georgia’s candidacy. The sides discussed opportunities for deepening cooperation, including tourism, the economy, and people-to-people relations.

The Irish Senate Chairman highlighted the Georgian diaspora’s role in Ireland’s cultural diversity and bilateral ties. Security challenges in the region were also discussed. Darchiashvili thanked Buttimer for supporting Georgia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and European aspirations.

Meeting with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defence

Georgia’s Foreign Minister met with Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defense, Vice Prime Minister Micheál Martin. According to the Foreign Ministry of Georgia’s press release, the parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding to enhance political dialogue, strengthen bilateral and international relations, and support Georgia’s European integration.

Additionally, Ireland’s Foreign Minister disclosed Ireland’s plan to grant visa exemption to Georgian citizens holding diplomatic passports for travel to Ireland. The implementation of the decision is currently in progress, as discussed during the meeting.

During the meeting, both parties focused on Georgia’s EU accession process. Georgia’s Minister briefed his Irish counterpart on progress with European Commission recommendations, expressing hope for a favorable evaluation. Ireland reaffirmed its support for Georgia’s EU aspirations. The sides stressed the significance of EU member states, including Ireland, in offering assistance and shared experiences.

The release notes that the meeting’s agenda covered bilateral relations extensively, highlighting Ireland’s political support in various contexts and the potential for enhanced trade ties. Regional security was also discussed. Ilia Darchiashvili thanked Ireland for supporting Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, particularly in the EU observation mission. The sides also discussed plans for upcoming political consultations in Tbilisi later this year.

Meeting with the Lord Mayor of Dublin

During his official visit to Ireland, Foreign Affairs Minister Ilia Darchiashvili met with Dublin’s Lord Mayor, Daithí de Róiste. According to the Georgian Foreign Ministry’s press release, the sides welcomed the “fruitful partnership” between Tbilisi and Dublin and discussed sharing experiences in areas like transportation policy, historic area development, and ecology between the two historic cities.

The Lord Mayor expressed interest in Georgia’s efficient public services and one-window service for citizens, seeing mutual benefits in tackling modern challenges through cooperation. He also commended Georgia’s active participation in the Go Green for St. Patrick’s Day, fostering closer ties between the two nations.

Meeting with the Minister of State for European Affairs and Defense

In the framework of his visit to Ireland, Georgia’s Foreign Minister met with the Minister of State for European Affairs and Defence, Peter Burke. Ilia Darchiashvili provided the Irish Minister with a comprehensive update on Georgia’s progress in fulfilling the 12 European Commission recommendations. He also underscored Georgia’s steadfast commitment to EU accession reforms.

According to the press release of the Foreign Ministry of Georgia, the meeting highlighted the strategic significance of granting Georgia candidate status for both the nation and the EU. Both parties stressed the importance of EU member states, including Ireland, supporting this process. Ireland’s Minister of State reiterated Ireland’s political and practical support for Georgia’s EU integration.

Overall, the meeting underscored the strong partnership between Georgia and the EU and Georgia’s importance as a valuable EU partner. Regional security challenges were discussed, with recognition of the EU’s vital role in maintaining regional peace and security. The EU monitoring mission in Georgia was notably acknowledged, and Georgia expressed gratitude for Ireland’s active involvement in the mission.

Meeting with the the Minister of State and Diaspora

During his visit, Ilia Darchiashvili met with Sean Fleming, Ireland’s Minister of State and Diaspora at the Department of Foreign Affairs. They discussed Ireland’s effective diaspora policies and explored opportunities for sharing experience.

Georgia’s Foreign Affairs Minister spoke of Georgia’s approaches to compatriots abroad, highlighting the state’s efforts to strengthen the Georgian diaspora through policies, projects, and programs.

The meeting stressed the diaspora’s crucial role in achieving foreign policy goals and acknowledged Ireland’s success in enhancing its image.

Georgia thanked Ireland for involving an Irish expert in developing its diaspora strategy and extended an official invitation to Minister Fleming to visit Georgia.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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