Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili has signed an application to join the European Union following the Kyiv lawsuit.

Georgia is now waiting to receive candidate status from Brussels.

“The application for EU membership is another milestone on the path of Georgia’s European integration,” said the Prime Minister of Georgia in a special address before the signing.

Prime Minister Garibashvili claimed that this phase “turns a new page in our history and continues the efforts of our ancestors aimed at Georgia’s entry into a common European family”.

“Georgia is a European state,” he continued, adding: “Our country has always belonged to European culture and the European civilized space throughout its long history and continues to make a valuable contribution to its protection and development.”

“The history of Georgia, which is a success story of struggles and struggles for freedom, is proof that these values ​​are embedded in the character of a Georgian person and are therefore an inseparable part of their identity.”

“History has considered the European elections of the Georgian people as its strategic goal,” stressed the Prime Minister.

“Since gaining independence, our country has continued to evolve, and this day is another sign of our efforts.”

The Prime Minister also assured that “Today, Georgia is closer to the EU than ever before”.

“When I signed the Association Agreement between the European Union and Georgia in 2014, in my capacity as Prime Minister of Georgia, we took on an enormous responsibility towards our country and our people to successfully start our path of European integration and build a strong and sustainable partnership basis for the later Europeanization of our country.”

In the lengthy speech, Prime Minister Garibashvili argued that Georgia has successfully fulfilled its obligations under the AA and has “made significant progress towards legal, economic and political rapprochement with the EU”.

“Democracy, rule of law, human rights and good governance have already become the essence of our daily life,” he noted, adding: “We are actively introducing European norms and standards in all areas of our political, economic and social life.”

The Prime Minister also stressed that the visa-free travel regime currently in place with the EU/Schengen zone is “a remarkable opportunity for close interaction between our societies and nations”.

Meanwhile, he said that free trade with the EU allows Georgia to achieve gradual economic integration with one of the largest markets in the world.

“The country’s modernization in line with European standards in a number of sectors has become irreversible,” Prime Minister Garibashvili added.

“Unwavering striving to build a European democracy and join the EU is a step towards Georgia’s unification. I believe that we will walk the path of EU integration together with our Abkhazian and Ossetian compatriots and build a united, strong European state together with them.”

“Sometimes questions are asked in Europe whether Georgia is a country of European culture or not, but the answer to this question is crystal clear to everyone in Georgia,” said the Prime Minister. “Georgia is truly one of the oldest countries in the world.”

Referring to a definition by French philosopher and essayist Paul Valéry, PM Garibashvili argued that Georgia is a deserving member of the European family because it fulfills the three key criteria – “Influence of Greco-Roman culture, Christian faith and democratic tradition”.

“The Georgian people, who are very proud of their millennia-old culture and history, have always been oriented towards Europe and have remained faithful to its values,” he stressed.

The Prime Minister recalled that “at the beginning of the 20th century, the Georgian people created a highly democratic European state based on European values, while its essence and constitution were highly compatible with the current criteria of Europe”.

“The national independence and statehood regained in 1991 was based on the same Georgian constitution, European values ​​and was predominantly European-oriented,” Prime Minister Garibashvili added.

“European future is a program and undisputed action plan of every government of Georgia entrusted by the people of Georgia.”

The prime minister then quoted Michel Mouskhely (Mikheil Muskhelishvili), co-author of a 1948 draft European federal constitution: “Georgia knows it belongs to Europe. Now Europe should draw conclusions. It is important for Georgia to establish itself in Europe while Western nations need to welcome Georgia into their family.”

“These words apply to the current reality as never before,” argued Prime Minister Garibashvili and further emphasized: “We hope and firmly believe that today a historic process is being laid that will lead to Georgia’s entry into the European family.”

“God be our protector,” said the Georgian Prime Minister at the end of his speech.

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