Dendias: We chose to amend the Agreement with the USA because it is in the interest of the country

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“The mutual Greece-USA defense agreement it is a tool to feel safe inside so that we can broaden our horizons, increase our perception of things and not go back to phobic syndromes that instead of empowering us, weaken us and trap us. We believe in the need for Greece to be open in the Balkans and not to be a prisoner of Greek-Turkish disputes “.

This was typically emphasized by Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias in the Parliamentary Committee on Defense and Foreign Affairs, during the discussion of the bill “ratification of the second protocol amending the Mutual Defense Cooperation Agreement between Greece and the United States of America”.

The Foreign Minister placed special emphasis on the development of the port of Alexandroupolis, emphasizing that the government considers its transformation into an energy hub in the Balkans as a major concern for Thrace and of great national importance.

“We have chosen to amend and extend the Agreement because we believe it is in the interest of the country. We did not pretend to be in a safe position, in the national interest. We wanted a NATO military presence in the region and in Thrace.

In fact, we discussed a 10-year extension of the Agreement. A major point was the issue of Alexandroupolis. We want a US military presence. Yes, we do not want the port of Alexandroupolis to be commercial. And that is exactly what bothered Tayyip Erdogan. We judge it as the greatest concern for Thrace. The history of the area changed with the creation of an energy hub. “Geopolitically, the crisis in Ukraine has confirmed what we are doing,” he said.

Mr. Dendias also commented on what is heard about patriotism in the public political debate, saying characteristically:

“There is a discussion about patriotism in Greek society. No one denies the patriotism of anyone. The question, however, is how this is perceived. Many times in our history, patriotism has covered selfish personal agendas. So let’s see how everyone gives meaning to patriotism. Inaction, ostrichism, logic behind the cannons, does not constitute patriotism. We believe in patriotism that stems from self-confidence and deep self-awareness, the knowledge of our identity. In an open heartfelt patriotism. We believe in the need for Greece to be open in the Balkans and not to be a prisoner of Greek-Turkish disputes “.

Mr. Dendias categorically rejected the opposition’s objections to a heterogeneous Agreement in favor of American interests and without commitments from the US side to defend the Greek national interests.

“Unprecedented accusations were heard regarding the preamble of the Agreement. That the 1990 provision is not repeated and that the adherence to the UN Security Council Charter regarding the national security of the country does not enter into force. It was not realized that the force of the provision does not change. Do we have to repeat it to be understood? Is it difficult to understand that it is not abolished and that it is valid? ” stressed and continued:

“The decision of the bilateral agreement on the security, independence and national sovereignty of our country against armed attack or threatening actions is firm and it is clear that the United States will actively and unreservedly oppose it and there is a commitment not to overthrow major situations.”

“The entire relationship between the two countries, Greece – USA is contained in the letter of US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken to Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, which was also voted by the US Congress. “All this is a package for our country’s relations with the United States,” said the Foreign Minister.

Finally, Mr. Dendias appeared very satisfied with the discussion that took place in the Commission, talking about a civilized dialogue.

“As the pre-election period has dawned and there are usually intense protests, the climate in the Commission has been very positive, regardless of the parties’ arguments and objections to the Greece-US mutual defense agreement.

Despite the disagreements that arose, the context of the debate in the Commission was civilized. No one disputes the patriotism of all wings. Two lines were developed for the Agreement. There is the complete denunciation and the vertical ideological objection of the KKE, respected, and there is the other wording from SYRIZA and the Greek Solution, but with different parameters as to whether or not it is beneficial for the national interests of our country. “Our disagreement with the KKE is deeply ideological because we believe that it is for the benefit of the homeland”, noted Mr. Dendias.

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