March 10 2004
Georgian President: My country is ‘culturally European’
Jacques Chirac “fully supports” Georgia in its bid to draw closer to
the EU (Photo: European Parliament)
In an interview with French daily Le Monde, Georgian President
Mikhaïl Saakachvili has said that his country is European, both
geographically and culturally.
Mr Saakachvili – who came to power late last year after ousting
former president Eduard Shevardnadze in a bloodless “rose revolution”
– said, “geographically, culturally, Georgia feels European and
Georgians are enthusiastic Europeans”.
Georgia, along with its Caucasus neighbours Armenia and Azerbaijan,
are likely to be included in the EU’s “wider Europe” programme, which
aims to create a ring of countries around the Union as part of a vast
And after talks with French President Jacques Chirac last night, Mr
Saakachvili said that he had France’s support for closer EU ties.
According to Iter-Tass, he said, “He (Chirac) fully supported
Georgia’s option to draw closer to the EU”.