Greece, UAE sign mutual defence pact

Greece and the United Arab Emirates agreed on a mutual defence treaty on Monday that calls for aid if one country's territorial integrity is threatened, the National Herald reported.

The agreement is part of a broader strategic partnership deal between the two countries, the National Herald said.

“Greece and the UAE condemn Turkey’s violation of the sovereignty and sovereign rights of the Hellenic Republic and the Republic of Cyprus, as well as its overall aggressive behaviour in the Middle East,” Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Emirati Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said in a joint statement last week.

Turkey is at loggerheads with Greece and Cyprus over access to natural gas reserves recently discovered in the eastern Mediterranean and has deployed exploratory and drilling ships to the disputed waters, despite objections by the European Union and the United States.

Turkey and the UAE have been at odds for several years over foreign policy and attitudes towards Islamist political groups, especially the Muslim Brotherhood. The countries also back opposing sides in war-torn Libya.