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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Georgia Joins the CSCE

PARIS -- Georgian leader Eduard Shevardnadze signed the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe's Paris Charter for the second time Friday, two years after he signed it on behalf of the now-defunct Soviet Union.

"I am very happy to be the first person to sign twice, the first time in Russian and now in my native Georgian. This is a symbolic event," Shevardnadze said after the ceremony at France's Elysee presidential palace.

Shevardnadze was Mikhail Gorbachev's foreign minister when the charter was adopted at a 34-nation summit in Paris in November 1990 before the break-up of the Soviet Union.

The charter enshrined commitments to human rights, democracy and the market economy and set out confidence building measures to defuse tensions between the West and the countries of the then Warsaw Pact.

Those states which, like Georgia, have since declared their independence from Moscow have been signing the treaty in Paris over the past year.