US, Georgia To Sign Defense Agreement On Monday - Tbilisi

US, Georgia to Sign Defense Agreement on Monday - Tbilisi

TBILISI (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 18th October, 2021) US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin will hold a meeting with his Georgian counterpart, Juansher Burchuladze in Tbilisi on Monday, during which the defense chiefs will sign a bilateral agreement aimed at strengthening Georgia's defense capability, the Georgian Defense Ministry said.

Austin arrived in the Georgian capital earlier in the day.

"Today, Georgian Defense Minister Juansher Burchuladze will host Lloyd Austin at the Ministry of Defense. After the official welcoming ceremony, the Georgian and American counterparts will hold a bilateral meeting to discuss defense cooperation between the United States and Georgia ... It is planned to sign an agreement between the Ministry of Defense of Georgia and the US Department of Defense, which aims to strengthen Georgia's defense capabilities and its deterrent potential," the official statement said.

Austin is also scheduled to meet with Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili.

The US defense minister will visit a Georgian army base and attend the joint exercises of the American and Georgian military personnel.

"The official visit of the US Secretary of Defense to Georgia, Georgia's main strategic partner, once again confirms the outstanding cooperation between the two countries in the field of defense. This visit will further deepen ties and strengthen partnerships between our countries," the ministry said.

The Pentagon announced on Friday that Austin would travel to Europe to visit Georgia, Ukraine, and Romania, as well as participate in the meeting of NATO defense ministers in Belgium from Thursday-Friday.

During his meetings with the European counterparts, the US defense chief is expected to discuss cooperation in the Black Sea region, among other regional and global security contexts. He is also expected to comment on Georgia's and Ukraine's prospects for NATO membership.