BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:20 P.M.) – The Cypriot media announced the arrival of two French Rafale fighters, in addition to a C-130H support plane, to the island of Cyprus, in what they said was a French message addressed to Turkey.
The “Defense-Point.Gr” news portal, which specializes in military affairs in Greek, said that France, by sending the three military aircraft, sent a clear message to Turkey.
It reported that the two French fighter and support aircraft landed yesterday afternoon at the Andreas Papandreou Air Base in the Paphos region and will remain on the island for several days, within the framework of the military agreement between France and Cyprus, which was activated recently, and will carry out flights over the island.
In 2017, France and Cyprus signed a joint defense agreement, which was activated early this month.
The same story stated that it is not yet known whether the French aircraft will conduct training exercises with the Cypriot National Guard, indicating that this issue will become clear in the coming days.
This defense website considered that the process of sending French warplanes to Cyprus “is tangible evidence of France’s policy determination to strengthen the military and political presence of Paris in the eastern Mediterranean, in the face of each party standing against the rights of the Republic of Cyprus, and thus European Union rights. ”
The mission of the two French fighter jets was also described as the first evidence of the French military determination to defend the rights of the European Union and to implement the commitments made to Cyprus.
Sources were quoted as saying that French military officials visited the Cypriot ports of Larnaca and Limassol in the past few days, to inspect the reception facilities for French ships.