Άτυπο Συμβούλιο Υπουργών Άμυνας (Wroclaw, 22-23/9/2011) – Συμμετοχή υπουργού Άμυνας Πάνου Μπεγλίτη

Το Άτυπο Συμβούλιο Υπουργών Άμυνας πραγματοποιήθηκε στο Βρότσλαβ της Πολωνίας στις 22-23 Σεπτεμβρίου. Στο Συμβούλιο συμμετείχε ο υπουργός Εθνικής Άμυνας, Πάνος Μπεγλίτης.
Μετά το πέρας των εργασιών του Συμβουλίου, ο υπουργός Άμυνας Π. Μπεγλίτης δήλωσε ότι “το Υπουργείο Εθνικής Άμυνας έχει προετοιμαστεί για την μείωση της ελληνικής αποστολής σε διεθνείς αποστολές της ΕΕ και του ΝΑΤΟ, χωρίς αυτό να σημαίνει αποχώρηση της ελληνικής αποστολής. Πρόκειται να υπάρξει σημαντική μείωση της ελληνικής αποστολής στο Κόσοβο, το Αφγανιστάν και σε άλλες αποστολές, εξαιτίας της οικονομικής κρίσης“.
Ως προς τα αποτελέσματα των εργασιών του Συμβουλίου, ο υπουργός Άμυνας Π. Μπεγλίτης ανέφερε ότι:
Το Άτυπο Συμβούλιο Υπουργών Άμυνας αποτελεί θεσμικό χώρο ανταλλαγής απόψεων, χωρίς να λαμβάνονται αποφάσεις. Το Συμβούλιο προετοίμασε το Άτυπο Συμβούλιο Υπουργών Άμυνας της ΕΕ που θα πραγματοποιηθεί τον προσεχή Νοέμβριο για θέματα που αφορούν στην κοινή πολιτική ασφάλειας και άμυνας, υπό το φως της Συνθήκης της Λισσαβώνας.
Κεντρικό θέμα για την ΕΕ αποτελεί η ανεύρεση ισορροπίας ανάμεσα στην ανάγκη μείωσης των αμυντικών προϋπολογισμών και στην ανάγκη διατήρησης του υψηλού επιπέδου των ενόπλων δυνάμεων και της άμυνας των κρατών-μελών και της ΕΕ. Το θέμα αυτό ανάγεται σε υπαρξιακό ζήτημα για τα κράτη-μέλη, καθώς και για τους διεθνείς οργανισμούς, όπως η ΕΕ και το ΝΑΤΟ.
Όλες οι ευρωπαϊκές χώρες, όπως και οι ΗΠΑ, λόγω της οικονομικής κρίσης, προχωρούν σε περικοπές των αμυντικών δαπανών, σε αναστολή των εξοπλιστικών προγραμμάτων και σε εξορθολογισμό της λειτουργίας της εθνικής άμυνας. Κατά συνέπεια, δημιουργείται ο κίνδυνος για τα κράτη-μέλη της ΕΕ να μην μπορούν να υλοποιήσουν τις αποφάσεις της ΕΕ και του ΝΑΤΟ.
Στο πλαίσιο του γενικότερου προβληματισμού, έγινε μία ενδιαφέρουσα και έντονη συζήτηση για την ανάπτυξη συνεργιών μεταξύ των κρατών-μελών, έτσι ώστε να προωθηθεί η συμμετοχή σε κοινά προγράμματα, όπως η εκπαίδευση των ενόπλων δυνάμεων, αλλά και να επιτευχθεί επιμερισμός του κόστους σε περισσότερες χώρες της ΕΕ.
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Greece will defend its sovereign rights

The Ministries of Defence and Foreign Affairs issued announcements concerning the sea surveys conducted by “Piri Reis,” a Turkish naval research ship in an area between the Greek island of Kastellorizo and Cyprus.
The Greek Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the “Piri Reis surveys an area outside Greek territorial waters, however, Athens has claimed the rights to potential undersea mineral and fossil fuel deposits.”
National Defence Minister Evangelos Venizelos said that “Athens is watching closely” and that “in any case, Greece will defend its sovereign rights.”
Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Differences with Turkey     [PHOTO]: Kastellorizo
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

Holocaust Remembrance Day

» (GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Liberation of Auschwitz Anniversary

“Auschwitz took the lives of many; Greek Jews were dispro­portio­na­tely numerous among them. Greeks of other faiths also paid a heavy price, often in defence of their Jewish brethren.

Many have been declared Righteous among the Nations and their names are engraved at the Holocaust Memorial of Yad Vashem,” Alternate Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas said in a statement, issued on January 27, on the 65th anniversary of the liberation of the concentration camp.
This year also marks the tenth anniversary of the Stockholm Declaration which launched a fertile rethinking of the Holocaust in Europe and Greece is proud to be among the original signatories of this epochal document, said Droutsas.

» “Greeks in Auschwitz-Birkenau” 

At a press conference at Greece’s Press and Communication Office in New York, on January 26, the head of the Foreign Ministry’s Diplomatic and Historical Archives, Fotini Tomai presented a series of evidence, documents and testimonies that reveal and highlight the extent of human tragedy as recorded in the book “Greeks in Auschwitz-Birkenau.”
This publication of the Foreign Ministry (in Greek and English) will be presented today at a special event at the Greek Consulate General in New York. 
See also: UN, International Holocaust Remembrance Day;
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: International Holocaust Remembrance Day;  Greek News Agenda: Special Issue – The Jews of Greece

OSCE Forum for Security Co-operation

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Alternate Defence Minister Panos Beglitis will inaugurate the OSCE’s Forum for Security Co-operation with an address at the Organisation’s headquarters in Vienna today.
Greece assumes the rotating chairmanship for the first four months of 2010.
The Forum constitutes the OSCE’s autonomous political and military body, and deals with issues of the so-called “tough security”, with its own Presidency, that alternates in alphabetical order every four months, as well with its own “Troika,” which functions in a coordinating manner.

Greek Foreign Minister: Strengthen European Defence Policy

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Speaking shortly after the European Union’s General Affairs and External Affairs Council (GAERC) (December 8-9) in Brussels on Monday, Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis stressed the need for strengthening the European Security and Defence Policy, as well as respect for the EU’s autonomy regarding the adoption of decisions. “The continuous strengthening of the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP), both political and operational, has always been Greece’s steadfast option and pursuit.” the minister said. She added that the fundamental principle of autonomy in the EU’s decision-making, on which it can and must boost its cooperation with the Atlantic Alliance, must be respected. Asked about Greece’s participation in operations against pirates in Somalia, Bakoyannis said that being a big maritime force it was impossible for Greece not to be a part of an effort by the international community to combat piracy. Topping the agenda of the meeting were the handling of the economic and monetary crisis and achieving an agreement on energy and climate, the main points of which were examined by the GAERC. Other issues included the EULEX in Kosovo, being launched today, developments on the interim agreement between the EU and Serbia as well as the situation in the Middle East and in Congo. Ministry of Foreign Affairs: European Policies- ESPD; Council of the European Union: The European Security and Defence Policy (ESPD)

Greek Commander @ Helm of EU Naval Operation

The Council of the European Union adopted a Joint Action on an EU military operation on November 10 to tackle piracy and armed robbery off the Somali coast. Greek Commodore Antonios Papaioannou was appointed as the commander of EU naval forces in the area. The operation (EU NAVFOR, Somalia) under the code name “Atalanta” is the first naval operation launched by the European Union within the framework of the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP). EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), Javier Solana congratulated Papaioannou, adding that he brings “his considerable expertise and the experience of his national navy to his role as Force commander for this operation in a new area for the EU.”  The success of the operation will secure a safe passage for vulnerable vessels, including those of the United Nation’s food aid programme. Following the Governmental Council on Foreign Policy and National Defence’s meeting yesterday (12.11.2008), Defense Minister Evangelos Meimarakis announced that Greece will participate in the Atalanta operation. Ministry of Defense: Hellenic Navy & International Presence

Greece: Defence – Security – Technology, Exhibition

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The exhibition “Athens International 2008: Defence-Security-Technology in SE Europe and the Middle East” is taking place at the Athens International Airport – Eleftherios Venizelos from May 15 to 18. The event is organised under the auspices of the Ministry of National Defence, which aims at becoming a vehicle for the strengthening of dialogue and peaceful co-operation in Southeastern Europe.