ITF visited Georgia
In period from 4 to 7 August 2008 ITF visited Georgia. ITF responded to the invitation of the Ministry of Defence and Joint Staff of Georgian Armed Forces for the assistance in the establishment of humanitarian mine action programme in the country.
The Delegation, headed by director Goran Ga?nik, met with the highest representatives of Joint Staff of Georgian Armed Forces, among them with Chief of Joint Staff General-brigadier Zaza Gogava, and representatives of Ministry of Defence. The parties discussed about the cooperation in the establishment of the national mine action centre and the conclusion of the Memorandum of Understanding between ITF and Georgia. Additionally, ITF visited former Soviet Union military bases in Sagarejo in Mtskheta, which are mine contaminated and affect the lives of local population in close vicinity. Georgia confronts with up to 40 mine suspected areas.
The visit of ITF delegation coincided with the escalation of the crisis in South Ossetia and consequent outbreak of the war. Director Goran Ga?nik stated: “We expect that after the present conflict Georgia will confront with the extensive problem of explosive remnants of war. In accordance with our strategic plans to strengthen ITF’s role outside SE Europe and discussions on cooperation between ITF and Georgia, we are prepared with the support of donor community to respond to this urgent situation in remedying humanitarian crisis.”