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Where there is no law, but every man does what is right in his own eyes, there is the least of real liberty
Henry M. Robert

Greece Is Prepared to Buy Ukrainian "BISON" - says Greek Ambassador to Ukraine

6 October, 1998 - 00:00

The Ukrainian media reports that an order for at least 6 warships to
be made in Ukraine for the Greek Navy, worth several million USD, has been
canceled because Turkey did not allow a Zubr (Bison)-type air cushion vessel,
scheduled for a tender in Greece, to pass through Ankara-controlled Bosporus,
referring to the untimely request for passage.

However, Greek Ambassador to Ukraine Dimitris Kontumas told The Day
that his country is counting on beefed up and expanded military and military-technological
cooperation with Ukraine. This year a Greek military attache was accredited
to Kyiv and the Greek Defense Minister's visit is expected shortly. That
the Zubr-type warship was not demonstrated in Greece is no obstacle, for
this can be done later and the Ambassador is convinced that these landing
ships have unique characteristics indeed.

Of course, the above statement, particularly the closing part, could
be interpreted as paving the way for a lucrative warship contract, but
official Kyiv may sacrifice military-technological cooperation with Greece
for the sake of a Turkish tank order worth over $2 billion, considering
that there is little love lost between Turkey and Greece these days. The
more so that touching a sore spot in Ankara is the last thing Kyiv would
want under the circumstances. Ukraine refused to supply spare parts for
Y-80 tanks and ZRK C-300 systems in Cyprus, following Ankara's warning
that once C-300s appear on the island, they will be hit from the air. Athens,
in turn, regards this as a possibility for an armed conflict between Greece
and Turkey.