Visit of the Chief of the National Guard to London

  The Chief of the National Guard (NG) Lieutenant General Ilias Leontaris visited London, United Kingdom (UK), from 28 to 30 January 2019.

  During his stay, the Chief of the NG had meetings with:

• The High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus in London, Ambassador Euripides L. Evriviades, whom he briefed on the purpose of his visit as well as on other issues related to the National Guard including its transformation programme.

• The Chief of the Defense Staff of the United Kingdom, General Sir Nicholas Carter at the Ministry of Defense in Whitehall, London. The Chief of the NG informed his UK counterpart on the situation and developments in the SE Mediterranean and Middle East. They also discussed the issues of strengthening Bilateral Military Cooperation (BMC) were also discussed as well as the NG Transformation Programme and the UK Armed Forces Defense Modernization Program (DMP). Finally, it was agreed to launch a Staff Talks programme to coordinate BMC.

• Commander of the Joint Forces Command, General Sir Chris Deverell. The Chief of the NG briefed him on the situation and recent developments in the SE Mediterranean and Middle East. General Deverell elaborated on the organisation and the challenges Joint Forces Command.

• Chief of Joint Operations Vice-Admiral Tim Fraser, at the Permanent Joint HQs at Northwood. The Cypriot delegation was given a presentation on the ongoing operations the UK Armed Forces are involved in, as well as on the HQ’s operating procedures.

• The Commander of the EU Operation, EU NAVFOR SOMALIA "ATALANTA", Major General Charlie Stickland, at the Multi-National Headquarters in Northwood.  The Republic of Cyprus participates with an officer in Op. ATALANTA HQ’s, which are to be moved to Spain and France at the end of March due to Brexit.

• The Honorable Archbishop of Thyateira and Great Britain, Mr. Gregorios, as well as with the President and Members of the Executive Committee of the National Federation of Cypriots of the United Kingdom, whom the Chief informed about the purpose of his visit to London, as well as on other issues related to the National Guard including its transformation program.

• Lieutenant-General Ilias Leontaris was also invited at the annual Defense Geospatial Intelligence conference. At his speech on "Delivering Security in SE Mediterranean", the Chief of the NG referred to the security challenges encountered in the Southeast Mediterranean as well as to the role of the Republic of Cyprus as a pillar of Stability and Security in the region.

• DGI is the largest annual conference in Europe that examines the progress and exploitation of Geo.Intel and its involvement in Decision Making and Operation Planning.

• The Chief of the NG was accompanied in the meetings by staff officers, the High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus in London, Ambassador Euripides L. Evriviades, the Defense Attaché of the Republic of Cyprus in the UK and the UK Defense Attaché in the Republic of Cyprus.

02/02/2019