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US Allocates $20 Million in Defence Assistance to Georgia

The United States (US) is allocating $20 million USD in defence assistance to Georgia, announced theUS Department of Defence.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter welcomes Georgian Defense Minister Tinatin Khidasheli to the Pentagon, Aug. 18, 2015. DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

Today’s announcement came one day after US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter hosted Georgia’s Defence Minister Tinatin Khidasheli in Washington D.C. At the August 18 meeting in the Pentagon the leaders discussed regional security issues and the US-Georgia defence relationship, said Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter welcomes Georgian Defense Minister Tinatin Khidasheli to the Pentagon, Aug. 18, 2015, while showing her the portrait of U.S. Army Gen. John M. Shalikashvili, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Born in Warsaw, Poland, to Georgian parents, Shalikashvili served as the chairman from 1993 to 1997. The two defense leaders met to discuss matters of mutual importance. DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

The leaders reviewed ongoing US security assistance to Georgia’s Armed Forces, including plans for the $20 million additional funding in 2015 through the European Reassurance Initiative.

“Secretary Carter also reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to continuing defense cooperation with Georgia, including through annual bilateral and multilateral exercises and training,” the press secretary added.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter shakes hands with Georgian Defense Minister Tinatin Khidasheli as they pose for a photo at the Pentagon, Aug. 18, 2015. DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

“Secretary Carter commended Minister Khidasheli for Georgia’s ongoing commitment to Afghanistan as the second-largest overall troop contributor to the NATO Resolute Support Mission,” Cook said in his statement.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter, second from left, meets with Georgian Defense Minister Tinatin Khidasheli, second from right, to discuss matters of mutual importance at the Pentagon, Aug. 18, 2015. DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

“Secretary Carter also emphasised that the United States, together with our allies, remain committed to supporting Georgia through the NATO-Georgia Commission and the Substantial NATO-Georgia package agreed at the 2014 Wales Summit,” he added.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter hosts an honor cordon to welcome Georgian Defense Minister Tinatin Khidasheli to the Pentagon, Aug. 18, 2015. The two defense leaders met to discuss matters of mutual importance. DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

Tuesday’s meeting was a first between Carter and Khidasheli to discuss bilateral defence cooperation between the two countries.