March 31, 2023
Robin Dunnigan Says if Elected as US Ambassador to Georgia, She will Focus on Four Priorities
Robin Dunnigan, candidate for the US Ambassador to Georgia, told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that if her candidacy is approved, she will work with the government and people of Georgia to help implement the desire for integration with the European Union and NATO.
“First and foremost, my highest duty will be to ensure the safety of the team working at the US Embassy and all Americans in Georgia. Over the past 18 months I have worked to help secure our embassy team in a very challenging environment in Kyiv. I know that this responsibility is sacred….I will work with the Government of Georgia…to help them realize their desire for further integration with the EU, NATO and the West and advance a democratic future.
“Euro-Atlantic integration will not only benefit the citizens of Georgia, I deeply believe that it is in the national interest of the United States. We want a democratic Georgia firmly integrated with the West, able to protect its borders and withstand the pressure of Russia’s malicious actions, including Russian disinformation.
“….I will also work with the Government of Georgia to protect against potential coercive economic practices, including from Russia and the People’s Republic of China.
“…Russia still occupies about 20 percent of Georgia’s territory;
“My final priority will be to advocate for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity….Georgia has been a staunch NATO partner for peace since 1994 and has been the largest contributor of forces in Afghanistan among non-NATO countries, next to American troops,” said Dunnigan.
US President Joe Biden nominated Robin Dunigan as a candidate for Ambassador to Georgia in February.
March 31, 2023
US Ambassador to Georgia Candidate Says Georgian Gov’t Wants to Comply with Sanctions Against Russia
Robin Dunnigan, candidate for the US Ambassador to Georgia, said at a hearing held in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the Georgian government wants to comply with the sanctions against Russia.
According to Dunnigan, they have been asked for some training to help with this from the government and added that Georgia is very important in the international arena in passing resolutions condemning Russia’s aggression.
As Dunnigan said, special sanctions coordinators and other agencies will travel to Georgia in the coming months to continue this dialogue.
March 31, 2023
US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Holds Hearing for Ambassador Nominee to Georgia, Robin Dunnigan
On March 30, the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations held a nomination hearing during which Robin Dunnigan, the nominee for the position of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Georgia, discussed her plans and goals for her term.
Robin Dunnigan was introduced to the Senate by U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan, who took the opportunity to address the 2008 Russo-Georgian war. “In some ways, our current problems with Russia started in Georgia,” Sullivan said. “Back in 2008, when Russia invaded Georgia. We talk a lot about how Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was unprecedented, in terms of scale and duration it has been. But the world got its first taste of what was in store for Russia’s sovereign neighbors back in 2008 in Georgia.”
During the hearing, Senator Chris Van Hollen asked Ms. Dunnigan about the recent protests in Georgia and the “foreign agents” bill expressing concern about legislative crackdowns on NGOs and civil society not only in Georgia but also in other countries around the world. Although the bill had been dropped, there are still apprehensions about Russian influence, especially in the eyes of Georgian protesters, he noted and inquired about Dunnigan’s perspective on Russian influence in the Georgian political system and the state of democracy in Georgia following these events.
Robin Dunnigan responded that the recent protests in Georgia over the “foreign agents” law reflect the Georgian people’s desire for integration with the West and the EU. She emphasized the importance of US support on this path. Dunnigan also noted that Russia is engaged in malign activities in Georgia
Senator Tammy Duckworth asked about how Georgia position on war in Ukraine, Dunnigan noted that the Georgian people strongly support Ukraine in the war, and that the country has taken important steps to assist Ukraine….She reiterated that if confirmed she will continue to work closely with the Georgian government in support of Georgia’s own sovereignty and territorial integrity and to help hold Russia accountable for its commitments under the 2008 ceasefire agreement and other international obligations.