BRUSSELS, Oct. 12 (UPI) -- NATO welcomes the new parliamentary leadership in Georgia, calling on all parties there to work to consolidate the rule of law, the secretary-general said.
The Georgian Dream party secured a victory over the United National Movement party of President Mikheil Saakashvili last week. Saakashvili, accused of monopolizing power following a 2004 revolution, said he'd move his party into the opposition.
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen called Saakashvili and Georgian Dream leader Bidzina Ivanishvili to congratulate them for a free, competitive election last week.
"This is a historic moment in the democratic development of your country," Rasmussen said in a statement. "Now it is important for all sides to come together to further consolidate democracy and the rule of law."
Saakashvili was criticized for going to war with Russia in 2008 over the disputed territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and cut diplomatic ties to Moscow.
Rasmussen said the alliance was ready to assist Georgia in the security sector, adding he was looking forward to a strong relationship with the new government in Tbilisi.