At Defense Ministry, Tsipras assures policy continuity

Continuity in Greece’s defense policy will not be disrupted if SYRIZA were elected in government, leftist opposition leader Alexis Tsipras said on Tuesday after a marathon meeting at the Defense Ministry.

“We assured the military chiefs that we have full trust in them, because the state will have continuity and the security of our country is top priority,” Tsipras said during the three-and-a-half hour briefing, adding however that the debt-hit nation should adjust its defense budget to account for the “difficult economic reality.”

The chief of SYRIZA, which is ahead in polls, also held a 45-minute meeting with conservative Defense Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, who welcomed the SYRIZA initiative.

In comments afterward, Tsipras also slammed Turkey’s growing assertiveness over Cyprus describing Ankara’s planned gas exploration in waters where Nicosia has already licensed companies to drill as an “unacceptable violation of [the island’s] sovereign rights.

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