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Cyprus, Greece, France, Italy in maritime manoeuvres

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Cyprus, France, Greece and Italy have completed a small-scale aeronautical exercise (PASSEX) that took place off the island’s coast with naval forces from the four Mediterranean countries.

The Defence Ministry said the four EU states are “committed to upholding freedom of navigation in international waters and overseeing any deviation from respect for international maritime law”.

Although not mentioned, the message is directed at Turkey and its search for energy in Cyprus and Greece maritime zones.

French navy stealth corvette Aconit with its Panther helicopter took part in the air and sea military exercise with Italian aircraft carrier Giuseppe Garibaldi, Greek frigate Hydra and Cyprus patrol boat Ioannides and an AW-139 helicopter.

“The exercise, coordinated by the General Staff of the National Guard, is part of the Quadripartite Initiative (QUAD) and is another step in enhancing interoperability between participants,” said a ministry statement.