U.S., Hellenic coast guards sign memorandum of understanding to strengthen bilateral cooperation

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U.S., Hellenic coast guards sign memorandum of understanding to strengthen bilateral cooperation

MOU signing

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ATHENS — At a ceremony at the Greek Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Insular Policy in Athens, Commander of U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area Vice Adm. Steven Poulin and the Commandant of the Hellenic Coast Guard Vice Adm. Theodoros Kliaris signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the United States and Hellenic coast guards, Tuesday.

The MOU represents the intent of both parties to expand joint cooperation in areas such as maritime safety, maritime operations, maritime security, fisheries enforcement, marine environmental protection, and training. The U.S. Embassy in Athens will partner with the U.S. Coast Guard in implementing the MOU.

This MOU is a step forward in the already close relationship between the two coast guards and further solidifies the partnership between the United States and Greece. It seeks to promote common goals and strengthen bilateral cooperation related to safe navigation, the safety of lives at sea and environmental protection, and other issues of common interest within respective authorities, policies, and international obligations framework. It establishes clear goals, parameters, and metrics for exchanging information, best practices, services, and technologies in these areas and also facilitates the exchange of experts and technical visits.

"I want to take this opportunity to re-affirm the strong friendship between our coast guards and to thank you for your tremendous hospitality during my visit to Athens," said Poulin. "The U.S. Coast Guard and the Hellenic Coast Guard relationship is an extension of the friendship between our two nations dating back 200 years."

In his remarks at the signing ceremony, U.S. Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt said, "The cooperation between our two countries helps to reinforce the credibility and capabilities of our Alliance in a neighborhood that is not always friendly, and in a region where Greece has come to be seen by all as a pillar of stability, a reliable NATO Ally, a net provider of security, and a country which is part of the solution to building the kind of stable, democratic region that our citizens want and deserve."