Vaziani Military Base

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One of the compound training areas in Vaziani
U.S. Navy medical technicians assess an injured civilian during a simulated man-made disaster during RESCUER/MEDCUER 05(RM 05). The annual exercise is designed to improve interoperability among the 17 participating countries by conducting crisis response, disaster relief, consequence management, and humanitarian assistance operations. (September 19, 2005)

The Vaziani Military Base is located Coordinates: 41°41′41″N 45°02′48″E / 41.6947°N 45.0467°E / 41.6947; 45.0467 about twenty kilometers outside Tbilisi at Latitude 41.6947 Longitude 45.0467, Georgia. The main base is spread over 10,000 hectares. The Vaziani airfield—location: 41°37′41″N 45°1′51″E / 41.62806°N 45.03083°E / 41.62806; 45.03083[1]—has strategic importance as its concrete landing-strip is suitable for middle (Il-76MD) and heavy (An-124 "Ruslan") transport aircraft.[2]

Under the Soviet Union, it was the home base of the 137th Guards District Training Centre, originating from the Soviet 1st Guards Mechanized Corps. The airfield was home to the 283rd Aviation Division of the 34th Air Army.

The Russians retained control of a number of military bases even after Georgian independence. Vaziani was one of them, the others being Gudauta, Akhalkalaki and Batumi. It was from Vaziani that Igor Giorgadze was taken on a military flight to Moscow after the 1995 assassination attempt on President Eduard Shevardnadze.[citation needed]

At the OSCE Summit in Istanbul in 1999, the Russian Federation and Georgia released a joint statement that Russian military bases at Gudauta and Vaziani would be disbanded and withdrawn by 1 July 2001.

Russia finally ceded control on June 29, 2001. A battalion of Georgia's 1st Infantry Brigade, Georgian Land Forces, then took possession.

In July 2008, it was the site of Immediate Response 2008, which were U.S. training operations for Georgian forces.

It was bombed during the 2008 South Ossetia War.

The Vaziani military base with its training areas has been chosen as a site for the construction of one of the planned joint NATO-Gorgia training centers codenamed JTEC in accordance to the Whales Summit 2014 agreement on enhancing education and training cooperation between Georgia and NATO.[3]

During exercise "Noble Partner 2015", a rifle company of the US 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team and a mechanized company of the 1st Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division deploying M2 Bradleys – 14 in total, participated in a joint mechanized infantry manoeuver alongside their Georgian counterparts, who on their side deployed the BMP-2[4]

For "Noble Partner 2016", which will take place in May 2016 on the Vaziani training area, it has been reported that the US will deploy an armoured unit of M1 Abrams tanks.[5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Vaziani airfield". 
  2. ^ Army and Society in Georgia October 1999
  3. ^ http://www.nato.int/nato_static_fl2014/assets/pdf/pdf_topics/20150827_150827-jtec-georgia.pdf
  4. ^ http://www.eur.army.mil/noblepartner/
  5. ^ http://sputniknews.com/europe/20160121/1033502498/us-georgia-drill.html

External links[edit]