The Greek Foreign Minister, Nikos Dendias, confirmed that his country will sign an agreement with Saudi Arabia to deliver, install and operate the Patriot missile system in the Kingdom’s territory.
A defensive, not an offensive weapon
The Greek minister indicated that this would be in addition to the deployment of Greek forces as well, while a local newspaper stated that this agreement is imminent. Without setting a date.
“This weapon is not an offensive weapon, but rather a defensive weapon,” Dendias added before the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Greek Parliament.
According to Greek media; The minister stressed that his country “has never pursued an aggressive policy and will never”.
The Greek newspaper “Ekathimerini” said that according to the agreement, which is approaching the date of signing, “Athens will deploy its forces on territory. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is within the limits of cooperation regarding the installation and operation of the mentioned missiles.
The newspaper reported that “the technical details related to the transportation, deployment, cost and operational responsibility of the missiles remain. Need a settlement in order to complete the conclusion of the agreement. ”
This came after weeks of the two countries ’foreign ministries’ agreement during the visit of Saudi Foreign Minister “Faisal bin Farhan” to Athens. To enhance the military air capabilities of Riyadh. In light of the attacks on the facilities of the “Aramco” oil company, through missiles and drones of the Houthi group in recent months. According to the newspaper.
In the middle of last month, Greek media said it is likely that Athens and Riyadh will reach a defense agreement. Under which the Greek Armed Forces would deliver the Patriot missile system to their Saudi counterpart.
According to the newspaper, this Greek trend towards military cooperation with Saudi Arabia is due to American pressure to push Athens. To exist militarily in the Gulf region.
The newspaper quoted sources, that Greece twice refused to respond to Washington’s demands to send a frigate to the Gulf waters. To strengthen the naval military presence of Washington and its allies in the region under US command.
Tense Saudi-Turkish relations
This news comes in parallel with the continuing tension in Saudi-Turkish relations, albeit some dissolution, as it represents rapprochement. Riyadh with Athena, a nuisance to Turkey.
Especially after Greece, Egypt and Greek Cyprus objected to the signing of the Turkish government and the Libyan Government of National Accord. On 27 November 2019, there were two memoranda of understanding, the first of which stipulated defining the areas of maritime influence between the two parties. Turkey began exploring for gas in the Mediterranean Sea, off Turkish Cyprus.
The tension in Saudi-Turkish relations came against the backdrop of several issues, most notably the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Inside his country’s consulate in Istanbul. And Turkey’s demand to reveal the real commander to carry out the assassination, which investigations indicate that he is the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman.
Turkey and Greece
Tension between Turkey and Greece returned again, after Ankara sent a new research vessel in the northern Aegean Sea, whose activity continues. Until the second of next March.
A few days ago, the Turkish Navy was informed that the research vessel “Cesme” will conduct a marine survey on February 18. Until next March 2 in the northern Aegean.
Turkish military sources accused Greece of escalating tension after practicing many activities in the Aegean Sea, starting with the maneuvers. Even the submarine missions since the launch of the exploratory talks between the two countries.
After an absence of 5 years, Istanbul Province witnessed the 61st tour of exploration between Turkey and Greece, on January 26. To be held another round next March.
Greece says that the new Turkish maritime activity in the Aegean is “unnecessary and does not help to create positive emotions.” While she submitted a complaint through her foreign ministry to her Turkish counterpart.
The Greeks point out that, although the ship operates in international waters, the responsibility to issue maritime notices is in this. The part of the Aegean is the jurisdiction of Greece.
Sources in the Turkish Ministry of Defense said that the research vessel “Cesme” will carry out scientific and technical studies in the northern Aegean. Up to 2 March under a pre-planned annual program. It does not include the sea floor and the studies will be carried out in full accordance with the 1976 Berne Convention.
It stated that the research ship “HS Naftilos” of the Greek Navy has carried out similar studies in marine areas. The international waters included the north and west of the island of “Medili” and the north of the islands of “Saqiz” and “Ihekeria” during the months of November and December 2020.
And confirmed that the Greek research ship “AEGAEO” has also carried out underwater studies in marine areas that included international waters. Between the island of “Crete” and the “Mora Peninsula” in the period following January 25, the date of the start of the “advisory talks” between Turkey واليونان.
She pointed out that Greece is currently continuing underwater studies launched in northern Crete by issuing the NAFTEX notification. (For the sailors) on February 18th and it is not known when it will end.
She emphasized that Greece’s statements that Turkey is carrying out actions that raise tension in the region do not reflect the truth and were issued with the aim of misleading. International public opinion in an overt manner. During this period in which the consultative talks are continuing between the two countries, and Turkey is following them with regret and surprise.
And considered that these statements are clear evidence of Greece’s position, which does not have the desire to solve problems through negotiations and dialogue. And it leads to tension and is not amenable to understanding.
The sources pointed out that since January 25, Greece has conducted “Lightning-21” maneuvers with the participation of 20 ships and a large number of air elements. In an area that included international waters northwest of the island of “Eskery”.
Follow our YouTube channel to watch all new
Click here and activate the subscribe button