Greece has hosted the international armed forces exercise 'Iniochos 2021' for over 30 years, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said at Andravida base on Tuesday, one of the most dynamic, demanding and competitive military exercises available.
The annual exercise provides valuable training in a world where new threats rise every year, he said.
"Greece will always promote a positive agenda, founded on joint values, respect of International Law and the Law of the Sea, rules of good neighborhood, and mutual respect that must underlie relations of modern countries," Mitsotakis said.
"At the same time, however, we cannot be naive," he noted. "We are facing new threats. Our world is extremely complicated and our neighborhood is unfortunately becoming more unstable. Greece will continue to expand its defense capabilities and to upgrade its Armed Forces. We will continue to implement NATO's targe for expenditures equal to 2 pct" of GDP, he underlined.
While in Andravida, western Peloponnese, the Greek premier also spoke with pilots attached to the 111 Combat Wing's 347 Squadron, based in Almiros in central Greece, where he had served for his military obligation.
The exercise takes place along the entire width of the Athens Flight Information Center. Besides the Greek Air Force, Navy, and Army, the exercise includes the following aircraft: Rafale and Mirage 2000D (France), F-16 (UAE), F/A 18 Hornet (Spain) and F-15 and F-16 (Israel). In addition, there are F-16s, MQ-9 drones, and a flying tanker KC-135 (United States), CGI-Air Weapon Managers (Canada), and an AW 139 helicopter (Cyprus).
In addition, five countries are attending as observers: Austria, Egypt, Jordan, Romania and Slovenia.
Observing Iniochos 2021 along with Mitsotakis were Deputy National Defense Minister Alkiviadis Stefanis, Secretary General Antonis Economou, the top chiefs of the Armed Forces, and Western Greece Regional Director Nektarios Farmakis. Also attending were the ambassadors of all participating and observing countries.