Pompeo visits Thessaloniki for the first time, security and business on focus

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias on Monday met with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Thessaloniki, Greek media reported. Pompeo, who is visiting Thessaloniki for the first time, will sign a bilateral science and technology agreement, as well as host energy sector business leaders for a discussion to highlight energy diversification and infrastructure projects in Greece.

In a document it released on the occasion of the visit, the US State Department said Greece “is a critical partner with which the United States shares key strategic goals.” The US considers Greece “a pillar of stability in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Western Balkans and a vital partner in bolstering security and prosperity in the region,” the document also said. “We are committed to supporting Greece’s security, prosperity, and continued democracy,” it added.

Hours before his trip, Pompeo had a discussion on de-escalating the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

Pompeo will depart later on Monday to visit the NATO Souda Bay naval base. He will tour the facilities on Tuesday and have lunch with Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis at the latter’s nearby residence. The US secretary of state will depart Greece early Wednesday for Rome.

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