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Georgian President: Tbilisi Will Ask For NATO Membership

Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili

Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili says his country will ask for NATO membership at the alliance's upcoming summit in Britain.

Margvelashvili said in a speech at the Chatham House think tank in London that "We will shoot for an invitation for NATO membership" but added that Tbilisi understood "[such] decisions are made in a much more complicated way."

NATO said earlier this year it would not expand its membership at it summit in Wales, which begins on September 4.

But it said it will offer Georgia a "substantive package" of cooperation that would help it move closer to the alliance.

Margvelashvili added that although it was good that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin are discussing the crisis in eastern Ukraine, "on the other hand we had one more column [of military armament] going [from Russia] into Ukraine [today]."

Based on reporting by Reuters