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Italy pledges 3 mln euros in aid to Georgia

Posted by Kris Roman on October 22, 2008

 

Italy will provide 3 million euros ($3.8 million) worth of humanitarian aid to Georgia this year to help rebuild the country following its armed conflict with Russia, the country’s deputy foreign minister said on Wednesday.

Alfredo Mantica said in addition, Rome would foot a 2.2-million euro bill for the deployment of 40 Italian observers in buffer zones around South Ossetia and Abkhazia as part of an EU peacekeeping mission in the region.

During a meeting of international donors on Wednesday in Brussels to discuss aid for Georgia he said that more aid would be forthcoming next year.

Norway will donate 235 million kroner ($34 mln), Germany pledged 170 million euros ($218 million), Ukraine $21 million, and Latvia $700,000 in financial assistance to Georgia.

According to a joint assessment from the World Bank and the United Nations, Georgia will need around $3.4 billion in foreign donations over the next three years to support its economy, rebuild damaged infrastructure and help refugees who lost their homes during the conflict.

The European Commission earlier pledged up to 500 million euros ($662.3 million) for the country up to 2010, with the U.S. offering around $1 billion to rebuild Georgia.

Russia, which was condemned by most Western powers for its “disproportionate” response to Georgia’s August attack on South Ossetia, was not invited to the conference, due to its decision to recognize South Ossetia and Abkhazia, another Georgian breakaway region, as independent states on August 26.

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