Just days after Greece announced that it would complete a new border fence along the Evros River, which forms the border with Turkey, Citizen Protection Minister Mihalis Chrisochoidis stated on Wednesday that the country would hire an additional 800 border guards in northern Greece.
His remarks were made after his meetings with Greek Police officers at the Thessaloniki Police headquarters on Wednesday.
“I announce to you that we are proceeding with the hiring of another 800 border guards in northern Greece,” he stated, “six hundred of whom will be located in Evros, 100 in Rodopi and 100 in Kavala.”
This is being done, he said, “in order to form a second line of defense, so that it is certain that Greece is protecting its borders, the areas in northern Greece that are sensitive, that it protects them and that no can illegally enter the country but only those entitled to seek asylum.”
Chrysochoidis said that the hirings will occur over the next several months and that the new guards will be trained so that they will be ready to be posted in the spring of 2021.
On his Saturday visit to the construction site of a new border fence along the Evros at Feres, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said that “it is the least the government could do to provide a sense of security to Greek citizens, whose morale remains high at such a difficult juncture.”
The premier made the statement alongside the Eastern Macedonia/Thrace Regional Director, directly after a detailed presentation in Feres on the progress of the fence’s construction.
Work is progressing rapidly, PM Mitsotakis said, adding that it will be completed by April 2021, when he will inaugurate the border fence in person.
Before the construction presentation, Deputy Citizen Protection Minister Lefteris Economou referred to the successful management of tensions at the Greek-Turkish borders in March and noted that the Armed Forces and Hellenic Police are protecting Greece’s — and therefore the EU’s — borders effectively and decisively.