The government has reportedly opted for a British model to restructure Greece’s National Intelligence Service (EYP) in an optimal and effective way.
The changes are being initiated in the wake of the tapping of PASOK President Nikos Androulakis’ phone, which exposed long-standing problems linked to the country’s intelligence services. Apart from the blow suffered by the government because of the transparency issues that emerged from the case, it became very clear that in its present form and mode of operation, EYP does not play the role it should and is not consistent with its mission of defending national security.
According to reports, the British model was not chosen by chance, as the decision was preceded by thorough research and contacts made by close associates of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
In his quest for individuals suitable to advise the government, Mitsotakis met with a prominent member of the British security and intelligence services.
The British expert has extensive experience in counter-terrorism, cybersecurity, intelligence and security sector reform, and is widely regarded as one of the individuals responsible for ushering the UK’s intelligence agencies into the 21st century.
For this reason, he is reportedly a highly respected figure in the UK and has received the highest honors. He was an MI5 officer during the 1980s and 1990s and dealt with the terrorist threats arising from the Northern Ireland troubles and international terrorism. His contribution to the reform of MI5 is also linked to wider developments in the counter-terrorism field as they were initiated following the attacks of September 11, 2001.
Although he has retired from active service, he continues to advise the British government informally.
The identity of this expert is being kept secret for reasons also connected with the work he has undertaken to deliver to the Greek government.
Despite the fact that his work is linked to MI5, the government is looking for solutions that clearly separate internal security issues from national security issues, i.e. those related to potential external threats.
The UK’s MI5 is geared towards protecting against terrorism at home, while the Secret Intelligence Service, known as MI6, deals with intelligence gathering from abroad.