BRUSSELS, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Friday pledged continued support to Georgia as the country pursues reforms which move it closer to the military alliance, according to a statement from NATO.
Welcoming Georgia's Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili to the NATO headquarters here, Stoltenberg thanked him for Georgia's contributions to the alliance.
"I would also like to start by thanking Georgia and the soldiers in the quick reaction force in Resolute Support in Afghanistan," he said.
Stoltenberg stressed that NATO really appreciated its partnership with Georgia. "We discussed during our meeting how we can strengthen that partnership and how we can develop it further," he said.
Congratulating Kvirikashvili on the successful October parliamentary elections in Georgia, Stoltenberg highlighted, "NATO will continue to support you in implementing those reforms and we will continue to provide both political support and practical support for Georgia."
Regarding Georgia's aspiration to join the alliance, Stoltenberg said, "Georgia has all the practical tools for membership, we will continue to support you in your aspirations and in your efforts to strengthen your ties with NATO."
They also discussed the challenges in the Black Sea region. "The Black Sea region is of strategic importance for the whole NATO Alliance and the partnership with Georgia is an important part of that," Stoltenberg added.
NATO allies agreed at the 2008 Bucharest Summit that Georgia would become a NATO member, provided the country meets all necessary requirements.