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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-11-16

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Gov't on issue involving sub's delivery
  • [02] FM to accompany PM on trip to UK

  • [01] Gov't on issue involving sub's delivery

    The government appeared adamant on Thursday, a day after a cascade of local press reports cited the national defence ministry's refusal to accept delivery of a new submarine unless its specifications are met, as well as unrelated preliminary negotiations over a batch of Leopard II main battle tanks ordered by the army.

    "These are orders and contracts made by the previous government, and the current government is, appropriately, checking the absolute fulfillment of conditions in the relevant contracts," alternate government spokesman Evangelos Antonaros said in response to numerous questions during his regular press briefing.

    Antonaros also clarified that the issues involving the submarine and the tanks are separate, "there is the issue of the submarine, where negotiations were held that did not generate desired results, therefore, the government's position still stands, namely, that it will not accept delivery of the submarine unless operational and technical specifications are fulfilled".

    The spokesman said the case involving the MBTs is in the "preliminary stages, tests are underway that have not been completed."

    The submarine in question, the "Papanikolis" (named after a celebrated WWII Greek submarine) was constructed at the HDW shipyards in Kiel, Germany. The latter is part of ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems, which emerged following a merger between ThyssenKrupp Werften and HDW. The marine systems division is a subsidiary of ThyssenKrupp Technologies.

    Another two submarines in the Papanikolis class (type 214) are being constructed at the Hellenic Shipyards in Skaramangas (west of Athens), an industrial complex that is part of the ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems group.

    Caption: The submarine Papanikolis (type 214) is shown sailing from the Kiel shipyards in February 2005. ANA-MPA photo / STR.

    [02] FM to accompany PM on trip to UK

    Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis will accompany Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on a trip to London on Nov. 20-21, the foreign ministry announced on Thursday. While in the UK, Bakoyannis is scheduled to meet British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett and have a working dinner with Minister for Europe Geoff Hoon.

    Bakoyannis' next stop will be Russia on November 22-23 for talks with her Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, Russian Security Council Secretary Igor Ivanov and other officials, including a meeting in Saint Petersburg with Governor Valentina Matviyenko.

    Foreign ministry spokesman George Koumoutsakos said the agenda for Bakoyannis' talks in Moscow and Saint Petersburg included bilateral relations with Russia, bilateral economic ties and the entire range of EU-Russia relations, with Greece a firm supporter of EU-Russia cooperation, in addition to energy issues.

    On November 28-29, the foreign minister is scheduled to take part in the NATO summit taking place in Riga, Latvia.

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