30 May 2006 - GEORGIA PLEDGES CRACKDOWN ON PEOPLE TRAFFICKERS [PRESS COMMUNIQUE]
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili pledged today (Monday) to crack down on human traffickers, arms dealers and smugglers operating from his country's territory and surrounding region.
Addressing a meeting of the NATO-Parliamentary Assembly in Paris, he said such actions would enhance Europe's security.
"The dangerous rise of criminal activity targeting European markets is a major threat to Europe's security," he told NATO parliamentarians. "Just as we intend to be part of Europe's diversified energy supply, we also intend to contribute to Europe's security by cutting off illegal human trafficking, and the illegal trade in weapons and smuggling."
He told the NATO-PA's Plenary Session that his government would soon be launching new proposals to develop enhanced and intense cooperation in this field with member states and the institutions of the European Union.
Mr Saakashvili stressed his country's European credentials, but said Georgia did not expect to become a member of the European Union in "the foreseeable future".
"We see our role as helping consolidate European security outside the borders of the EU," he said.
His address on the final day of the NATO-PA's five-day Spring Session was received with warm applause by more than 300 parliamentarians from NATO member states.