Ned Price, US Department Spokesperson, Tuesday said: “We believe that NATO’s Open Door policy, its should be an open door for those countries that aspire to join the Alliance. We’ve also said that no outside entity can or should have a veto on any eligible country’s aspirations to join the NATO membership.”
Asked about the membership process, Ned Price continued: “These will be Alliance decisions. They are a set of requirements that any aspirant country will need to fulfil before being eligible to be considered for full membership. But Georgia already is an important NATO partner. We have had close consultations with Georgia on the margins of NATO meetings.”
During a press point, Ned Price also said that the US “consistently stood by Georgia and with the people of Georgia in their desire to be a free and sovereign people and a free and sovereign country.”
“And over the years, from the earliest days of Georgia’s post-Soviet independence, we have now developed a strategic partnership between our countries. We work together towards our shared vision of a Georgia that is fully integrated into the Euro-Atlantic family of nations and part of a Europe that is whole, free, and, we would hope, at peace. And this is a vision that takes hard work; it takes patience. It takes significant resources to realize. That’s why we have sought to do our part,” he stated.
Alluding to the financial assistance, Ned Price said the US allocated almost $6 billion in assistance funds to Georgia. Moreover, it trained over 20,000 Georgian soldiers and sent over 6,000 people to the United States for cultural and educational exchange programs.
“We’ve helped promote economic growth, the rule of law, democratic governance, many other initiatives that are important to the Georgian people and their aspirations, but important interests of ours as well. And so we’ll continue to partner with Georgia on their aspirations, on their ambitions, and to protect what they’ve been able to achieve,” US Department Spokesperson underscored.