The defense ministries of France and Greece have both confirmed that a competing offer from the USA will have no impact on an already “signed” and final multi billion-euro deal to purchase French Belharra frigates.
France’s Ministry of Armed Forces stated on Saturday that a defense contract with Athens had already been initialed a few days ago, before the US State Department announced its approval of a potential sale of American frigates.
Greece’s Defense Ministry also confirmed that the deal with Paris was final, since it had been negotiated at the highest level possible and personally announced by the Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency said it had approved the sale for $6.9 billion of four Lockheed Martin combat frigates, and a separate $2.5 billion program to upgrade Greece’s MEKO-class frigates.
The announcement triggered some concerns over the Athens-Paris agreement, especially after a long-existing submarine construction deal of the century between France and Australia was abruptly tanked by a bombshell AUKUS pact, without any prior warning.
Paris was outraged and accused Washington and Canberra of a “stab in the back,” while just two weeks later Macron shared a stage with the Greek PM to personally announce the sale of at least three French warships to Athens for around $3.5 billion.
France said it was time to stop being naive while touting the new deal as a sign of Europe’s strategic autonomy and sovereignty.
This time around, according to the French military, the USA had warned us that this announcement was going to come out and that Americans allegedly had no inclination to go further with an actual sale of their frigates.
RT. com / ABC Flash Point News 2021.