Israel asks airbase in exchange for air defense

According to the news website OnlyCy, the Israeli government reportedly asked the Cypriot permission to use the “Andreas Papandreou” airbase in Paphos in exchange for ensuring the air defense of the Republic and changing the military balance in the region.

This request comes after the recent incidents of harassment of a Cyprus Airways flight and the continuous violations of Cypriot airspace south and east of Paphos.

In the “A. Papandreou” AB, the Cypriot government has built the necessary infrastructure for hosting and supporting fighter aircraft, while nearly a decade ago F-16 fighter jets of the HAF had stationed for a short time at the AB under the joint defence area doctrine between Greece and Cyprus.

The Israeli proposal is a significant upgrade of military relations between Israel and Cyprus, and certainly any decision taken by the Cypriot government will change the military balance in Cyprus.

This move also shows the determination of Israel to defend the energy resources of the area and its concern for the Turkish aggression. On the other hand such a move, if it were acceptable, would undoubtedly upgrade the crisis in the area because of the gas drilling.

However, in general, the Israeli proposal is a qualitative improvement in relations between the two countries and should be examined with caution.


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  • john

    I like the idea, although it would make Cyprus a more of a target, it would also raise the strategic importance of Cyprus for the region and the world. Up to now Cyprus has often been the sacrificial pawn of more powerful states and it would be nice to feel more secure for the first time in god knows how many years. This would be good for the security of Israel as well because they would not be as vunerable to attack by virtue of having two base’s from which to operate. A mutually beneficial arrangement for Cyprus and Israel at the expense of escalating tensions in the region and alienating some other middle east countries. What price cypriot security?

  • Iraachilleos

    An Israeli military presence in Cyprus will guarantee the Republic.
    obviously there will be less blackmails from the stronger neighbours.
    The best think that could ever happen to Cyprus, waste no time !

  • Falco

    Is this a real story or just mis-information? If it is real then the security it will provide from the Turkish threats is most welcome, the problem I have is that Israel like Turkey is no shrinking violet its got a bloody past and enemies as long as you hand. If we are going to do this its not just the airforce that needs upgrading….its the whole system and attitude by us.

    • Vicspot

      I am an Israeli, jew but my grandfather was greek. I like the idea of military cooperation with cyprus and greece nobody will violate cypriot airspace then.

      • Leonidas

        My brother I’m the same, My ancestors were Jewish Greeks that converted to Greek Orthodoxy during my Great Grandfathers time, and now I consider myself Greek with Jewish roots which I’m very proud of. I’m also thrilled of the Israeli Greek Cypriot Partnership. I would also like to see Greece involved in this project as natural extension of the partnership

        • Korakitis

          I am a greek without jewish roots and I am very happy for the israeli – greek – cypriot cooperation!

          Its good for Greece.

    • Herve1826

      Falco, although my comment is very late, it seems that, from all the countries in the M.East.. only Israel is geared in looking for peace(full) relationship with his neighbours : Jordan and Egypt; Turkey (before it “converted” islamist); Greece, Armenia, Bulgaria, Romania and even Turkmenistan and Azerbaidjan (muslim countries).
      Israel had to adjust among all those nations… and if with Armenia or Kurdistan it wasn’t possible to make strong ties (Turkey + USA would not have appreciated it), Israel is much stronger now… and can challenge any arrogant nation (Iran / Turkey / new Egypt / Syria).. and break their back bone.. in 3 short minuts !!
      Greece, Armenia, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Kurdistan, …etc… realise that time has come not to fear.. and not to bend over or knee.
      Israel is proud but not arrogant.
      Israel is strong (thank G.od) and is ready to share (for security, new alliances… and business purposes)
      It is a WIN-WIN alliance… for the future GENERATION to come.

  • Jtzenos

    Its a natural follow up of the drilling agreement between them. Already Cyprus is a Turkish target ! John you shown a fear ! by rejecting the defense of Cyprus, a lot of people in the past have shown that with the known results, more target than it is already for the last 40 years?

    • john

      Dear Jtzenos,
      I think that my post tried to look at the pros and cons but did not adequately express my opinion although I did say that I like the idea. Let me emphasize I would love it if Israel where given a base in Cyprus in exchange for air defence for Rep. of Cyprus. I do not beleive in appeasing bullies, if history has taught us anything it’s that appeasing bullies only leads to bigger and worse problems down the road. Just look at Hitler for example, nobody would confront him until it was too late. There are some parallels here too, Hitler hated jews and Erdogan hates Israel (did you see Erdogan in Davos, google it) and both Hitler and Erdogan had or have aggressive expansionist ambitions and big egos. In my humble opinion Erdogan poses a major threat to the peace and security of the region (and especially Cyprus)

  • Paul

    DO IT!!!

  • perseus123

    Cyprus is already a target, now it becomes a target with serious consequences for the one attacking it. It should be done, I mean Greece dropped the ball on this one and could have had planes stationed there years ago but it did not live up to the defense dogma signed in 93, too bad.

  • john

    Just looked under the sub-heading INTEL and read about Turkish plans for the invasion of the Greek Island of Ro. This just highlights the importance for Cyprus, Greece and Israel to form alliances. If Israel has an air base here in Cyprus they can also install missile defence systems as Cyprus tried to do previously. The last time Turkey threatened Cyprus and the Missile defence system was moved to Crete, somehow I don’t think Israel would be as cooperative, Come on let’s do it

  • Anonymous

    we are verry pleased about these news it is perhaps our destiny to cooperate in the region and a great challenge !

  • Jhr

    I hope they take Israel up on their offer

    • LonGreek

      Lets go the whole hog and install greek army and fighter units in Israel to contribute to Israeli security. An alliance is a 2 way street. What do our Israeli brothers think? By the way those that are anti-semitic in greece have no future. I am Greek and proud to believe in the security of Israel so lets also think how we can contribute also.

      • Korakitis

        Israel is going ti intall a basenot in greece but in cyprus. Greece already has a base there….

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