Greece, Israel defence agreement approved as PM talks to US senator critical of Turkey

Greece’s parliament has approved the country’s defence agreement with Israel for the supply of defence equipment and services between the two countries.

The parliament’s Standing Committee on National Defence and Foreign Affairs approved the agreement on Wednesday with National Defence Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos adding that “the strategic relationship between Greece and Israel is a major priority for our country, mainly due to the common challenges but also the common interests that unite the two countries.”

Panagiotopoulos described the agreement as beneficial, stressing that it creates the framework for the uninterrupted continuation of defence support between the two countries, whenever the need may arise.

“We believe that cooperation with Israel strengthens a pillar of stability in the eastern Mediterranean,” he noted.

The agreement is expected to be ratified by a plenary session next week.

At the same time Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had a telephone conversation with US Senator Robert Menendez, a leading member of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and a strong critic of Turkey’s provocative behaviour in the region.

Menendez has repeatedly called on the US administration to impose sanctions on Turkey.

The Greek PM and Menendez discussed developments in the broader eastern Mediterranean, emphasising the need to respect International Law and rules of good neighbourliness for peace and security.