Defense and Security Cooperation
The most important episode of the US-Georgian cooperation was the implementation of Georgia Train and Equip Program (GTEP) initiated in 2002 and followed by the Sustainment and Stability Operations Program (SSOP) in 2005. Three Georgian brigades trained under the GTEP and SSOP have been deployed in Iraq under the U.S. leadership in 2005-2008.
Since March 2010 under the U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command Georgian infantry battalions participate in ISAF Operation in Afghanistan. More than 11.000 Georgian troops have been trained since 2010 under the auspices of GDP-ISAF program.
Hereby, military educational programs, U.S. Advisory teams, assessment visits of the U.S. experts are important to be mentioned. These programs financed and implemented by the U.S. side aim to increase Georgia’s defense capabilities, stimulate defense reforms and enhance the level of military education.
One of the important directions of U.S.-Georgia security cooperation is Biological Threat Reduction Program, which is the priority area of cooperation in the sphere of non-proliferation of WMD. Within the framework of the program Central Public Health Reference Laboratory (CPHRL) has been established.
Considering Georgia’s progress in defense system modernization, democratic and economic reforms and its substantial contribution to ISAF operation the U.S. President declared publicly about enhancing defense cooperation with Georgia after the meeting with his Georgian counterpart in 2012. Later on, on the meetings of the both countries’ defense officials the main directions of Enhanced Defense Cooperation have been identified.
The aim of Enhanced Defense Cooperation is to enhance Georgia’s defense system modernization, accelerate defense reforms, increase the level of NATO interoperability and improve self-defense capabilities.
In August 2013 as a result of the meeting between Minister of Defense of Georgia and U.S. Secretary of Defense two new areas were added to the list of Enhanced Defense Cooperation.
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