U.S. and Greece renew defence deal to advance stability in Eastern Mediterranean

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U.S. and Greece renew defence deal to advance stability in Eastern Mediterranean
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias signed an extension of the Mutual Defence Cooperation Agreement (MDCA) on Thursday. Secretary Blinken said the agreement would allow the NATO allies to advance security in the Eastern Mediterranean region and beyond.

Dendias and Blinken met in Washington for the third round of strategic dialogue between the two NATO allies. Two leaders discussed the MDCA that allowed U.S. forces to train and operate within Greek territory since 1990. “The MDCA is the bedrock of our defence cooperation,” Blinken said in a statement. “Today’s amendment extends the MDCA’s validity, making it consistent with other bilateral defence cooperation agreements between NATO Allies and durable enough to allow for Greece and the United States to advance security and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean and beyond.”

U.S. and Greece renew defence deal to advance stability in Eastern Mediterranean

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said the U.S. commitment to Greece showed that both countries are determined to safeguard and protect each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Later on Thursday, the State Department issued a statement outlining the key areas of cooperation focusing on defence, trade and investment, climate, law enforcement and counterterrorism, and people-to-people ties.

Greece has recently shown interest in upgrading F-16 jets and Sikorsky helicopters and joining the F-35 fighter jet program.

Greece signed a new defence pact with France last month that will allow them to come to each other’s aid in the event of an external threat, but which has stirred further tensions with Turkey.

The Greek government plans to submit the new deal to Parliament for ratification next week. The timeframe is relatively tight, with the current agreement expiring on November 6.

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