23:05 GMT +319 March 2018
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    Georgian soldiers stand in formation during the inauguration ceremony of the NATO-Georgian Joint Training and Evaluation Center at the Krtsanisi military training base, outside Tbilisi, on August 27, 2015

    Georgia Joins NATO Rapid Response Force

    © AP Photo/ VANO SHLAMOV
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    Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said that Georgian contribution to the NATO Response Force (NRF) includes 130 soldiers.

    TBILISI (Sputnik) — Georgia has become the fourth nonmember state to be a member of the NATO Response Force (NRF), Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said Tuesday.

    The NRF is a technologically-advanced high-readiness unit comprising land, air, and maritime forces within the alliance. The initiative was launched in 2002, and members created an operational group in 2014, as a response to changing security needs. Finland, Sweden and Ukraine also participate in the NRF program.

    "We will be the fourth non-member country in the NFR, which indicates the high level of cooperation between the Georgian Armed Forces and the Alliance,” Garibashvili said as cited by the Georgian news portal Agenda.ge.

    He added that the Georgian contribution to the NRF includes 130 soldiers.

    Institutional cooperation between Georgia and NATO began in 1994, when Georgia became a member of NATO's Partnership for Peace program. The country's cooperation with the organization intensified in 2004 after a Rose Revolution which led to the forced resignation of President Eduard Shevardnadze.


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