“Greece stands by Israel,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs says in a post on Twitter. The post was accompanied by a photo in which the flag of Israel is seen flying next to that of Greece and the flag of the EU on the facade of the neoclassical building of the foreign ministry. This was a sign of Athens’ support for Tel Aviv.
Greece 🇬🇷 stands with Israel 🇮🇱 pic.twitter.com/CXhAEFHXHl
— Υπουργείο Εξωτερικών (@GreeceMFA) October 9, 2023
Earlier, Minister of Foreign Affairs Giorgos Gerapetritis emphasized: “Greece stands by Israel, which has the right to defend itself against these inhuman acts.”
He was speaking from Oman during a meeting of EU Foreign ministers and Gulf States.
“We will try to find those ways so as to stop the situation that is taking shape,” he added.
“I would like to emphasize that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, through the Embassy and the Consulate General, ensures that the Greeks who are in Israel return safely,” Gerapetritis said. “Already yesterday 90 people returned and the rest who remain will return in the next period. The Greek State will stand by the people so that they can safely return home.”
Greece alarmed over escalating violence between Israel and Hamas
Greece is alarmed over the escalating violence in Israel and the Gaza Strip following the terrorist attacks by the Hamas group on Saturday.
The Souda Bay facilities on Crete could, if deemed necessary, be used by American naval forces, namely the Ford aircraft carrier strike group, which has been ordered to head towards the East Med.
Reports say both Greece and Cyprus stand ready to assist in any evacuation plans. Cyprus had acted as a hub for thousands of people fleeing the conflict between Israel and Lebanon’s Hezbollah in 2006.
Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou and Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis immediately condemned Saturday’s attack on Israel by Gaza-based Hamas.
“Shocked by the news of the terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens, we condemn these atrocious acts of hatred and violence and stand in solidarity with Israel,” Sakellaropoulou tweeted.
I strongly condemn today’s atrocious terrorist attack against Israel, causing a high number of casualties among civilians. We stand by the people of Israel and fully support its right to self- defense,” Mitsotakis tweeted on X.
I strongly condemn today’s atrocious terrorist attack against Israel, causing a high number of casualties among civilians. We stand by the people of Israel and fully support its right to self- defense.
— Prime Minister GR (@PrimeministerGR) October 7, 2023
Police in Greece ramp up presence around potential Israel targets
The Greek police has ramped up its presence around the Embassy of Israel in Athens and other potential Israeli targets in light of the ongoing war.
The state security and intelligence services are also involved in the operation. Apart from Israeli missions or businesses in Greece, the operation is also designed to secure potential targets from attacks by sympathizers on either side of the conflict.
According to state broadcaster ERT, special attention is additionally being paid to camps and Palestinian community centers hosting migrants and refugees from the Middle East.
A protest gathering by several groups is being held outside the Embassy of Israel in Athens on Monday evening, following developments in the Gaza Strip and Israel.
— Christina Themelis (@tinathemelis) October 9, 2023