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Greek army to benefit from EUR 1 billion upgrade plan

The defence program comes amid rising tensions with Turkey, fast-tracked to meet Greece's immediate needs. Greece’s army is set to receive a €1 billion upgrade, a move that has been fast-tracked to meet the country’s immediate land, naval and air forces’ needs.

Greek army to benefit from EUR 1 billion upgrade plan F-16D of the Hellenic Air Force (Picture source: D.R.)

The decision was made on 2 April during a meeting of the Parliament’s Arms Committee following a confidential briefing attended by Defense Minister Panos Kammenos, Hellenic Armed Forces General Staff (GEETHA) chief, Admiral Evangelos Apostolakis, and the heads of the General Army Command (GES), the Air Force General Staff (GEA) and the Hellenic Navy (GEN).

The upgrade is no coincidence: it comes amid rising tensions with neighbouring Turkey. Matters reached new heights over the weekend, when Turkish politicians challenged Greece’s sovereignty in the Aegean yet again.

Greece is looking to finalise the defence deal by 30 April in a bid to stay within budget, and not exceed the €1.1 billion ceiling set by the government. Among the priorities is an upgrade by the US to 85 of Greece’s F-16 fighter jets, and the maintenance of its French-made Mirage 2000s jets. While the navy’s fleet of MEKO frigates need an immediate update.