Athens, Greece – Turkey’s new Navtex, which extended the work of the seismic research ship” Oruç Reis ” in the Eastern Mediterranean until September 12, caused great discomfort in Greece. Meanwhile, Greece and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have begun joint training of warplanes, which is expected to last 2 weeks. Flights were conducted around the island of Crete.
“Greece cannot be blackmailed,” the Greek Foreign Ministry said, adding that Turkey “continues its incitement by not listening to calls for dialogue, and continues to play its role in turmoil in the region.” We will continue our efforts to reach agreements on maritime authority boundaries with all countries in the region,” he said. Greece also issued a counter Navtex. The new Turkish Navtex covers areas closer to the island of Meis than its predecessors.
Co-training with UAE
Meanwhile, Greece and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have begun joint training of warplanes, which is expected to last 2 weeks. Flights were conducted around the island of Crete. 6 F-16 fighter jets from the UAE and 80 personnel are based in Crete.
Also yesterday, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke by phone with UAE Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The two leaders discussed the recent situation in the Eastern Mediterranean and the development of cooperation between their countries in all areas.
10 billion euros for weapons
“I have been instructed by Prime Minister Mitsotakis to strengthen the deterrent force of the Greek Armed Forces,” but Greek Finance Minister Christos Staikouras did not specify figures, confirming reports in Greek media that a 7-10 billion euro armament programme is being prepared. The Greece plans that France would be ordered to 12-18 Rafale-type fighter jets and 2 frigates, torpedo as well as Germany for submarines.
It was also noted that the necessary spare parts for Sikorsky type helicopters and fighter aircraft will be purchased. Greece had entered an arms race, estimated at about 50 billion euros, in the 8 years after the Kardak crisis in 1996. These expenditures were one of the major causes of the economic crisis, which began in 2010 and lasted until last year. The French” Europa 1 “TV’s claim that the French-owned” Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier will arrive in the Eastern Mediterranean earlier this month” under an unknown mission ” caused satisfaction in Greece.
Fear of Maraş engulfs Greece and the GCA Duo
Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration (GCA) are concerned about the closed city of Maraş after the Eastern Mediterranean. Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias will bring up Maraş during his contacts with UN and US officials in New York this Friday. The TRNC plans to open the tourist city of Maraş, which has been closed since the 1974 Cyprus peace operation, after the October presidential election.