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Georgian, US servicemen start annual military drills in Georgia

June 09, 2014, 14:19 UTC+3 TBILISI
The planned training exercises will 350 US marines from the Black Sea and 550 Georgian troops
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© EPA/FRANCIS R. MALASIG

TBILISI, June 09./ITAR-TASS/. Annual Georgian-US military drills, Agile Spirit-2014, have started in Georgia, the country’s Defense Ministry said on Monday.

The planned training exercises being held on the Defense Ministry’s Vaziani firing range outside Georgia’s capital involve 350 US marines from the Black Sea rotational force stationed in the Romanian city of Constance and 550 Georgian troops.

The drills “aim to deepen interaction between the Armed Forces of both countries, improve the skills of mutual assistance in peace-keeping operations,” the Georgian Defense Ministry said.

The US marines and Georgian troops will hold field maneuvers and staff exercises to practice the skills of peacekeeping operations, in particular, the skills of organizing control, searching for, revealing and defusing self-made explosive devices, the Defense Ministry said.

The drills that are being attended by military observers from France, Turkey and Romania, will end on June 19.

Georgia is holding the Agile Spirit exercises for the fourth time as a part of military cooperation between Georgia and the US.

In the past twelve years, the United States has been providing active assistance in training Georgian servicemen who participated in the Iraq peacekeeping effort in 2003-2008 and have been involved in the peacekeeping operation in Afghanistan since November 2009.

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