09TBILISI1234, GEORGIA: FORMER PM GRIGOL MGALOBISHVILI NAMED NATO

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09TBILISI1234 2009-07-06 13:41 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Tbilisi

VZCZCXRO6888
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
DE RUEHSI #1234 1871341
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 061341Z JUL 09
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1863
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L TBILISI 001234 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/02/2019 
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREL GG
SUBJECT: GEORGIA: FORMER PM GRIGOL MGALOBISHVILI NAMED NATO 
PERMREP 
 
REF: A. A. 2008 TBILISI 002009 
     B. B. 2008 TBILISI 002171 
     C. C. TBILISI 000090 
     D. D. TBILISI 000170 
     E. E. TBILISI 000090 
 
Classified By: Ambassador John F. Tefft for reasons 1.4 (b, d). 
 
1.  (C)  Summary.  Grigol Mgalobishvili, former Prime 
Minister and career diplomat, was approved by the Georgian 
Parliament as Georgia's Permanent Representative to NATO on 
June 26, succeeding Revaz Beshidze.  Mgalobishvili's tenure 
as Prime Minister, though short, was relatively well 
received(ref A) and he was a productive interlocutor with the 
United State(ref B).  He was replaced as Prime Minister on 
January 30, 2009 due to serious health issues(ref C, ref D). 
He has now recovered from his illness and will undoubtedly 
continue to be a good contact for the U.S. in his new role. 
End Summary. 
 
PERSONAL BIOGRAPHY 
 
2.  (U) Mgaloblishvili, born 7 October 1973, is from Tbilisi 
and has spent the majority of his diplomatic career working 
on Georgian relations with Turkey.  He graduated from Tbilisi 
State University in 1995 with a BA and MA in Oriental 
Studies. He spent 1992-1993 studying Turkish at Istanbul 
University.  He speaks English, Turkish, Russian and German 
and is married with two children. 
 
DIPLOMATIC AND POLITICAL CAREER 
 
3.  (U)  Mgaloblishvili served as the Georgian diplomatic 
representative to Turkey from 1995 to 2002 in various 
positions, including as an interpreter, Attache, First 
Secretary and Political Counselor.  From 2002-2003 he studied 
at Oxford in a postgraduate course in diplomatic studies, and 
in 2003 Mgalobishvili assumed the position of Deputy Director 
of the Department of U.S., Canadian and Latin American 
Countries at the Georgian MFA.  In 2004 he was promoted to 
lead the Department of European and Euro Integration, 
followed by promotion to Envoy Extraordinary and 
Plenipotentiary, and then on October 20, 2006 was promoted to 
Ambassador.  He served as Georgia's Ambassador to Turkey 
until October 27, 2008 when he was nominated as Prime 
Minister. He served in this position until submitting his 
resignation on January 30, 2009, due to his ongoing kidney 
illness (nephritis). 
 
4.  (C)  In a November 2008 introductory meeting with 
Ambassador Tefft(ref B) Mgaloblishvili stressed that a key 
issue for the country is how Georgia's allies "address the 
larger issue with Russia, whether they will let principles 
govern the relationship or simply move forward with Russia as 
a matter of convenience."  Mgaloblishvili is known for not 
being a particularly political figure(ref A) and according to 
sources in the GOG is generally liked and considered a 
skilled diplomat(ref A).  Despite rumours in December 2008 
that he had fallen out of favor with Saakashvili, including 
one extensively covered in the press involving an incident 
where Saakashvili allegedly threw a cell phone at him, these 
rumors were dismissed by close confidants of both men as 
false(ref C). Such rumors were fueled by Mgaloblishvili's 
need to frequently travel to Europe while PM for medical 
treatment, and his short tenure for the same reason. 
5.  (U) Mgaloblishvili told the Ambassador July eighth that 
he will move to Brussels at the end of September to take up 
his duties. 
TEFFT

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