Expansion of the Greek naval base in Crete

Greece will expand its weapons program in Crete, with plans to modernize weapons and expand its naval base, the Turkish pro-government newspaper Daily Sabah writes, citing official sources.

By ramping up its arms program, Athens plans to allocate 190 million euros to modernize and expand its naval base in Souda Bay, according to the Greek newspaper Kathimerini. The plans include making the base permanent. Approximately 1.2 billion euros will be spent on upgrading weapons: servicing helicopters, purchasing missiles and ammunition, and upgrading multiple rocket launchers.

Nikos Panagiotopoulos, Minister of Defense of Greece, informed the relevant parliamentary committee about additional appropriations for the expansion of the specified naval base. According to the Greek media, the final plan is to turn Souda into a permanent base for the Greek Navy, which will provide “faster and more direct access to the Eastern Mediterranean,” Turkish state news agency Anadolu said. According to the plans:

  • 900 million euros will be allocated for the modernization of multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) RM-70;
  • 160 million euros will go towards the maintenance of the Navy’s S-70 Aegean Hawk helicopters;
  • 150 million will be spent on the purchase of 30 thousand 120-mm ammunition for German-made Leopard 2 army tanks.

The parliamentary committee also approved the allocation of 20 million euros for new Hellfire missiles for US-made Apache helicopters equipped with laser guidance systems. As EADaily wrote, Greece expects Turkey to take two steps that will further increase tensions between the two nominal NATO allies “to levels not seen since 2020” as the Eastern Mediterranean plunged into a military-political escalation.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Turkey, tweeted threats to Athens in Greek earlier this month. GreekReporter.

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