Georgia to please USA with military base deployment

11:10, 12 March 2009
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The head of Georgia’s Foreign Ministry...

Georgia is ready to consider an opportunity to deploy a US army base on its territory in case Washington makes such an offer, according to Pravda.Ru. This statement was made by Georgian Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze in an interview with Japan’s Nikkei newspaper.

"Today there is no dialogue between Georgia and the United States on this issue. However, if the United States is going to deploy its base in Georgia, we are ready to give it a serious consideration," Vashadze said.

The head of Georgia’s Foreign Ministry was on his four-day business trip in Japan.

After the authorities of Kyrgyzstan decided to close the Manas air base, it was reported that Washington was looking for another air base location.

On February 19, Kyrgyz lawmakers practically unanimously voted for withdrawal of the U.S. servicemen who have to leave the Manas base by August 20.

According to Kyrgyz leader Kurmanbek Bakiyev, the local authorities were expecting the anti-terrorist operation in Afghanistan to last a year or two, not its dragging out for eight years.

The head of the Kyrgyz state said he had no doubts that the last American soldier would leave the base this August.

Explaining the reasons behind the decision to close the base, Bakiyev named the low level of compensation by the USA for the use of the facility and its infrastructure, and the negative reaction in the Kyrgyz society to the presence of U.S. troops in the country.

According to Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Kadyrbek Sarbayev, the USA had already notified Bishkek about the readiness to hold talks over the beginning of the procedure to withdraw troops from Manas, ITAR-TASS reports.

President of Kyrgyzstan Kurmanbek Bakiyev first stated the intention to close the Manas base when he was on a visit to Moscow on February 3.

According to official sources, the USA paid 38 million dollars to Kyrgyzstan for the lease of the airbase and use of the Bishkek airport infrastructure last year.

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