Georgia has not
called for NATO military help in its ongoing dispute with Russia, and the alliance has not begun planning operations in the Caucasus, a top general said
"There is no concrete planning here (at NATO), and no identification of scenarios in that part of the Caucasus. I'm not aware of any request by Georgia concerning military assistance," NATO Chief of Staff General Karl-Heinz Lather said.
"We are worried, of course, and we hope that the political leaders do what they can to end the difficult situation we have," Lather told journalists at NATO's military headquarters in Mons, Belgium.
Tensions over Russian support for the breakaway Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia have soared in recent weeks, with Georgia accusing Russia of shooting down one of its unmanned planes and Russia accusing Georgia of wanting to start a war.
Georgia is a current member of NATO's so-called Partnership for Peace (PfP), a security agreement under which NATO helps PfP members modernize and democratize their armed forces. It also contributes troops to NATO missions in Afghanistan and Kosovo.
Georgia's current pro-Western government has set joining NATO as one of its top foreign-policy goals. Moscow firmly opposes this aim, saying that it would be seen as a threat to Russian security.
At a summit in Bucharest on April 3, NATO leaders decided not to offer Tbilisi an immediate plan setting out how it should join the alliance, largely because of concerns over the so-called "frozen conflicts" in the breakaway provinces and fears of offending Russia.
But they did declare that Georgia will one day become a member, in the strongest display yet of joint support for Tbilisi.
The most recent round of tensions between Russia and Georgia erupted less than two weeks later, dpa reported.