Armed Forces Activities

31/01/2018 17:38:37

The President of the State of Israel Reuven Rivlin visits the Hellenic Fleet HQ


    The President of the State of Israel Reuven Rivlin visited the Hellenic Fleet HQ at Salamis Naval Base.

    It is the first visit of a head of state to the Fleet HQ of the Hellenic Navy.

    The President of the State of Israel was accompanied by the Minister of National Defence Panos Kammenos, the Chief of HNDGS Admiral Evangelos Apostolakis and the Chief of HNGS Vice Admiral Nikolaos Tsounis.

    The President of the State of Israel attended a briefing, which also included a digital representation of the Naval Battle of Salamis, and, afterwards, he crossed the historical place where the battle was conducted in 480 BC on board the missile boat “DANIOLOS”.

    The Minister of National Defence Panos Kammenos made the following statement:

    Your Excellency President of the State of Israel Mr. Reuven Rivlin,

    Your Excellency Madame Ambassador,

    Chief of the Navy of Israel,

    Delegates of the Israeli mission to Greece,

    As Minister of National Defence and representing also the attending Chiefs, the Chief of the Hellenic National Defence General Staff, the Chief of the Hellenic Navy General Staff, the Commander in Chief of the Hellenic Fleet, the officers, NCOs and seamen, I would like to welcome you.

    Your Excellency Mr. President,

    You are the first head of state that did us the honour to visit the Fleet HQ of our Hellenic Navy.

    This is a special honour for us and, at the same time, it is a strong message, a message that regards the entire Mediterranean, a message of peace and cooperation, a message of stability and progress.

    Over the last years, the governments of the two countries, the Ministries of Defence, our Armed Forces, through their hard work, have built an axis of stability in cooperation with all the moderate countries of the wider area.

    We cooperate in order to build this axis of stability which will stop those who want to bring incidents of terrorism and fundamentalism to the area of the Mediterranean and the West as well.

    The Navy, in particular, should build this axis of security in the Mediterranean in order to ensure the free trade of energy which is very important for every country of the West.

    Moreover, the vulnerable area that extends between our countries, from Israel to Suez, Cyprus, Malta and Crete, is an area where the largest trafficking of drugs, weapons, illegal oil which finances terrorism, takes place.

    Securing these sea routes does not concern only our two peoples, but the entire European Union, the Middle East and the Mediterranean countries as well.

    Your Excellency Mr. President we are at the historical place of Salamis, as you already mentioned.

    Here, hundreds of years BC, a small fleet consisting of approximately 300 vessels stopped a fleet of 1200 vessels which was trying not just to invade Greece, but to occupy Greece in order to conquer the West.

    And they did it. And this has always been the role of Greece due to its geopolitical position.

    Greece is on the frontier between the East and the West.

    From the ancient times until nowadays, Greece has always been on the right side of history. I am referring to World War I, World War II, as well as to all the major missions of the West.

    And when I refer to the West, I mean the free world.

    Mr. President,

    We welcome you here, at the Fleet HQ, at a difficult period for Greece. We are overcoming the major financial crisis which affected our country’s people. But a reason why Greece managed to stand still, except the sacrifices of its people, was that although its Armed Forces underwent financial hardships and their budget was cut, they kept up their high morale and their deterrence force against any threat.  

    We believe that this strong geopolitical position, now in cooperation with Israel and other countries which are countries of stability in the wider area, will help, by opening new energy routes through the exploitation of our country’s underwater resources, and it will lead it to a new era, to an era of prosperity for the Greek people.

    Your Excellency Mr. President,

    on behalf of all the officers, NCOs, seamen of the Hellenic Navy, we welcome you to our Fleet HQ and we thank you for your important presence here at this critical time for our country.

    We are honouring Israel’s first citizen and the entire Israeli people on behalf of the entire Greek people.”


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    Address : Mesogeion 227-231, Holargos 15451 - Greece
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