Sky Shield Initiative: Greece and Turkey simultaneously join the European anti-missile program

European Sky Shield Initiative missiles turkey greece

19 NATO member countries are already participating in the initiative - Why is France left out, and which major countries have not yet declared their participation

The simultaneous accession of Greece and Turkey to the ambitious European program Sky Shield Initiative for anti-missile protection, which is an initiative of Germany and Chancellor Scholtz, was signed today by the defence ministers of the two countries, Nikos Dendias and Yaşar Güler, on the sidelines of the Ministerial Summit of NATO in Brussels.

The accession of Greece was announced by Nikos Dendias himself, attending the work of the meeting, where he emphasised that he will also have a meeting with his Turkish counterpart in order, as he said, to "remember that it is absolutely necessary to maintain the current climate of recession, to avoid any challenges, of any actions, may dynamite the atmosphere that exists at this moment."

The European Sky Shield Initiative (ESSI) concerns the development of a ground-based integrated European air defence system that will have anti-ballistic missiles and contribute to strengthening the NATO Integrated Air Defence System.

Chancellor Scholz presented the proposal for its creation in August 2022, and it is essentially a first attempt to create a European missile defence after the new data created by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the deployment of Russian Iskander ballistic missiles in Kaliningrad.

And, of course, this initiative comes to cover the concerns about a possible disengagement of the US, in the event of Trump's election, from the commitment to the defence and security of Europe.

19 NATO member countries are already participating in the initiative: Germany, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania, Great Britain, Denmark, Sweden, as well as the "neutral" Austria and Switzerland.

France has not participated so far, considering that the German initiative has a particularly strong dependence on equipment produced outside Europe and expressing dissatisfaction and concern over the fact that the Franco-Italian SAMP-T anti-missile system has been excluded from ESSI, while in the initiative, Italy, Spain and Poland have not yet declared their participation.

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