In a step intended to cementing military ties within Europe after a diplomatic falling out with Australia and the US over a canceled submarine contract, France and Greece will ink a major defense deal this week.
According to the recent reports, the new deal will include commitments from Greece to purchase roughly EUR 5 billion worth of French warships and fighter jets, as well as a clause on mutual defense assistance, according to three Greek government officials.
In the last two months, Australia, the US, and the UK have unveiled a surprise military pact, known as AUKUS that prompted Canberra to rip up a EUR 50 billion submarine deal with Paris. The announcement enraged France, which urged its European neighbors to focus on shoring up their own defensive capabilities in response.
Many European politicians and military experts expected that this new pact will contribute to giving France’s defense industry a much-needed boost and advancing French President Emmanuel Macron’s desire to lead Europe’s military efforts.
Indeed, it is something that will contribute to giving France hope, thanks to the European Union financial contributions that will be made in this regard.
Commenting on this prospective bargain, Faith on Karaiosifidis, a defense expert and publisher of the Greek magazine Flight, said: “There is a connection with what happened with AUKUS.”
“France is taking everything in Greece and can come forward presenting this agreement on defense cooperation and cohesion as the basis of the European defense integration and the beginning of a European army,” he added.
It’s worth mentioning that the two European allies exchanged daily barbs and came closer to a full-blown clash than they had in 25 years.