The U.S. aims to transform the port of Alexandroupolis , which it has used for the shipment of weapons and personnel to the Balkans and Europe in recent years, into a military naval base, the Greek media has claimed.
The aim is for the U.S. companies to win the tender for the Alexandroupolis port, whose privatisation process has been initiated, and to expand the port so that the U.S. Arleigh Burke-class destroyers and warships of similar size can use the dock.
According to the Greek daily Kathimerini, the U.S. conveyed its plans to the Greek authorities on various occasions, primarily by high-ranking soldiers.
Within the framework of the defense cooperation agreement, Greece allocated the Giannouli headquarters in Alexandroupolis.
In the quarters, facilities with a capacity of 300-400 people are being built to accommodate the U.S. soldiers who use the port to go between to the Balkans and European countries.
The port of Alexandroupolis is used principally by travelers as there are daily services to the islands of Samothrace and Lemnos. Due to its strategic location on NATO’s eastern flank, it has important military logistical significance.
U.S. destroyers can dock in the major naval base of the Hellenic Navy and NATO at Souda Bay in Crete.
The base serves as the second largest, in numbers of warships harbored, naval base of the Hellenic Navy and the largest and most prominent naval base for NATO in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.
Additionally, it features the only deep-water port in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean Sea that is suitable and capable of maintaining the largest aircraft carriers.
Kathimerini pointed out that the U.S. are closely interested in the construction of a new facility at the base in Crete, which will enable the deployment of large unmanned aerial vehicles and F-35s.
The paper also stated that the U.S. will install “maritime awareness domain” radars in the Aegean in order to better monitor the activities of Russian warships in the Eastern Mediterranean.
The Arleigh Burke-class of guided missile destroyer is named after Admiral Arleigh Burke, an American destroyer officer in World War II and later chief of naval operations.
The lead ship, USS Arleigh Burke, was commissioned during Admiral Burke’s lifetime.