PAPHOS, (BM) – A $ 1.65 billion agreement was reached between Israel and Greece over the weekend when the two countries’ top diplomats spoke with Cyprus and the United Arab Emirates representatives, learned BulgarianMilitary.com citing Dnevnik.
- Greece can buy F-35 fighters, but not earlier than in five years
- Greece and France at the negotiating table for new frigates
- Military means against Turkey is an acceptable option for the Greeks
It includes setting up a new training center for Greece and maintaining it with Israeli assistance.
The quadripartite format, which brought together the Mediterranean countries with the UAE in the Cypriot city of Paphos, came as no surprise. They coordinated some actions during Turkish fuel explorations in the Mediterranean, in waters disputed by Greece and Cyprus.
Meeting of countries with problems with Turkey
However, it follows the historic normalization between the UAE (the first Gulf state to do so) and Israel last year. The tense camera attempted to dialogue between Ankara and Athens a few days ago. The so-called Abraham Accords – followed by Bahrain in the UAE Gulf – were mediated by the United States in the months leading up to the US presidential election.
The four countries, three of which represented at the level of foreign ministers, say they want to work together to help change the Middle East and stop it connects only with conflicts.
“The meeting results from the changes that have taken place in the Middle East over the past year due to bold decisions by leaders. And if you don’t believe that, ask yourself if you could see this picture only a year ago,” said Israeli First Diplomat Gabby Ashkenazi.
Among the topics announced were coronavirus, cooperation in vaccine distribution and research, and energy security in the region.
The focus was on Iran
Regional media point out that Turkey was not the focus of the meeting. Unlike Iran, tensions between it and Israel have risen over talks on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program, a cyber attack on a uranium enrichment facility, and other incidents.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Europe begins developing a next-generation medium-lift helicopter
At the same time, everyone present has had problems with Turkey in recent years. The UAE, which presents itself as Ankara’s geopolitical rival, has its interests in the Mediterranean due to active intervention in Libya and its close alliance with Egypt. Also, all four countries are important allies of the United States, supporting their own and their energy diversification projects in the region.
New training center
Israel and Greece have agreed to establish a training center for the Greek Air Force, operated by the Israeli company Elbit for 22 years. The center, modeled on a similar Israeli academy, will serve 10 Italian Leonardo M-346 training aircraft.
Elbit will also provide equipment for the modernization and maintenance of Greek T-6 aircraft (also used for training). The contract with it includes services such as training, supply of simulators, and logistical support.
Israeli Defense Minister Benny Ganz was quoted as saying by Reuters that the newly announced program “will deepen the partnership between the two countries at the level of defense, economy and politics.”
The two countries’ air forces also began joint exercises few days ago. It is known that in at least one exercise last year, Israeli planes practiced against Russian (located in Syria and Iran) S-300 anti-missile systems on the island of Crete. A Reuters source in the Greek armed forces says the complexes were not activated at the last exercise.
Follow us everywhere and at any time. BulgarianMilitary.com has responsive design and you can open the page from any computer, mobile devices or web browsers. For more up-to-date news, follow our Google News, YouTube, Reddit, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook pages. Subscribe to our Newsletter and read our stories in News360App in AppStore or GooglePlay or in FeedlyApp in AppStore or GooglePlay.