On May 20-21, 2012 NATO Summit was held in Chicago, where the member states discussed NATO defense capabilities, future engagement in Afghanistan and the Alliance’s partnerships.
Within the framework of the Summit various meetings were held, namely the North Atlantic Council (NAC) session at the level of heads of state and government; the meeting on Afghanistan with participation of the ISAF contributing nations, the Alliance meeting with the 13 partner nations, which have made particular political, operational and financial contribution to the NATO led operations; the NATO meeting with the 4 aspirant countries.
The Georgian delegation participated in all partnership and aspirant format meetings.
The heads of state and government issued the Summit Declaration after the NAC meeting,which contains several important messages related to Georgia:
On the NATO "Open Door Policy", the Allies reaffirmed their strong commitment to the Euro-Atlantic integration of the partners that aspire to join the Alliance in accordance with previous decisions taken at the Bucharest, Strasbourg-Kehl, and Lisbon Summits, welcomed progress made by these four partners, noting that the judgment of each of them will be made on their "own merits," and encouraged them to "continue to implement the necessary decisions and reforms to advance their Euro-Atlantic aspirations". In that context, NATO will continue to "offer political and practical support to partners that aspire to join the Alliance." The Declaration acknowledges that "NATO's enlargement has contributed substantially to the security of Allies;" respectively, the further enlargement will "continue to advance stability in Europe more broadly."
In the Georgia part of the Declaration, which follows the paragraphs related to other aspirant countries, the Allies reaffirm the Bucharest Summit decision that "Georgia will become a member of NATO", with all its elements and subsequent decisions; It is emphasized that the NATO-Georgia Commission (NGC) and Georgia's Annual National Programme (ANP) "have a central role in supervising the process set in hand at the Bucharest Summit." It should be underlined that the Allies welcomed "Georgia's progress since the Bucharest Summit to meet its Euro-Atlantic aspirations through its reforms, implementation of its Annual National Programme, and active political engagement with the Alliance in the NATO-Georgia Commission." The Declaration states that the decision was made to "enhance Georgia's connectivity with the Alliance, including by further strengthening political dialogue, practical cooperation, and interoperability with Georgia." The Allies expressed their appreciation on Georgia's "substantial contribution, in particular as the second largest non-NATO troop contributing nation to ISAF, to Euro-Atlantic security." The Declaration also notes the importance of conducting free, fair, and inclusive elections in 2012 and 2013.
NATO member states reiterated their "continued support to the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders and welcomed Georgia's full compliance with the EU-mediated cease-fire agreement and other unilateral measures to build confidence."The Allies underscored" Georgia's commitment not to use force and called on Russia to reciprocate," as well as to reverse its recognition of the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions of Georgia as independent states. The Allies noted the importance for all participants in the Geneva talks to play a constructive role as well as to continue working closely with the OSCE, the UN, and the EU.
In the light of the meeting with the "aspirant" countries, wherein Georgia participated along with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Allies once again expressed their gratitude to these "four countries that aspire to NATO membership" for the important contributions they are making to NATO-led operations.
In the paragraph dedicated to the NATO-Russia relations, the Allies pointed out about that parties "differ on specific issues" and urged Russia to "meet its commitments with respect to Georgia, as mediated by the EU on 12 August and 8 September 2008." It should be underlined that the Allies expressed their "concern on the build-up of Russia's military presence on Georgia's territory" and called on Russia to "ensure free access for humanitarian assistance and international observers."
The Summit Declaration also addresses the issue of "protracted regional conflicts" in South Caucasus and the Republic of Moldova. The Allies urged all parties to engage constructively and to respect the current negotiation formats with the aim of peaceful conflict resolution. NATO member states reaffirmed their support to the "territorial integrity, independence, and sovereignty of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and the Republic of Moldova," and noted that they will continue to support efforts towards a peaceful settlement of these regional conflicts, based upon these principles and the norms of international law, the United Nations Charter, and the Helsinki Final Act.
Opening remarks by the State Secretary of United States , Hillary Rodham Clinton at the meeting of the NATO Foreign Ministers with Foreign Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Montenegro and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia