Irakli Kobakhidze and Ināra Mūrniece, January 16, 2018. Photo: saeima.lv
Georgian Parliamentary Chairman Irakli Kobakhidze, who is paying an official visit to Latvia on January 15-17, held talks with his Latvian counterpart Ināra Mūrniece, as well as Foreign and Economy Ministers, Edgars Rinkēvičs and Arvils Aseradens, respectively.
The two parliamentary chairs discussed future cooperation between the two countries’ legislatures as well as Georgia’s European and Euro-Atlantic aspirations. Kobakhidze thanked Mūrniece for the Latvian legislature’s support for Georgia in this regard.
Mūrniece seized upon the opportunity to once again voice her country’s support for both Georgia’s western aspirations, and its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Kobakhidze and Mūrniece signed a memorandum on strategic partnership between the Parliament of Georgia and the Saeima [parliament] of Latvia. The memorandum envisions greater inter-parliamentary cooperation, coordination of work in international parliamentary organizations, and exchange programs for the staffs of the two countries’ legislatures.
According to the Georgian Parliament, Mūrniece described the Georgian-Latvian cooperation as “based on values,” and focused on “aspiration for democracy, Euro-Atlantic integration, and our cultural values and connections.” The Saeima Speaker pledged Latvia’s continued “firm” support for Georgia in the future.
In a meeting with Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs, Kobakhidze called Latvia “a special and faithful friend of Georgia,” and discussed with him the “grave humanitarian situation” existing in the Georgian regions under the Russian occupation.
Rinkēvičs gave positive assessment to the Eastern Partnership Summit of November 2017 and “pointed out that the document on 20 Deliverables for 2020 approved at the summit is a stepping-stone towards the strengthening of tangible cooperation between the EU and its partner countries.” He also encouraged Georgia to continue its process of reforms, “especially in the field of justice, the rule of law, good governance and economy.”
Latvian Economy Minister Arvils Aseradens said after the meeting with Kobakhidze that the two discussed One Belt One Road Initiative, as well as the ways to improve bilateral cooperation in the future, the Georgian Parliament reported.