Greece’s territory will expand for the first time since 1947 when the Italian-occupied Dodecanese islands became a part of the Greek state.
“This is the first time since 1947 that the Greek parliament has been called upon to vote for the increase of national sovereignty,” Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said in a speech at a meeting of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.
Greece’s expansion is because of the territorial waters in the Ionian Sea increasing to 12 nautical miles.
Greece’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, speaking at the beginning of the meeting of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defense, where the relevant bill is being discussed, stated that the increase of national sovereignty exceeds 13,000 square kilometers.
This is about 10% of the total area of Greek territory or one and a half the size of Crete.
“The government is proposing to exercise its inalienable right to increase territorial waters from 6 to 12 miles,” Dendias said.
“This will increase the area of national sovereignty by 10,079 sq.km, and if one takes into account the area created by the legal closure of bays, it exceeds 13 thousand sq.km,” he continued.
“The area of Crete is a little over 8,500 sq.m., so it is an extremely great honor for me, on behalf of the Mitsotakis government, to propose the passage of this bill,” Dendias added.