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US Amb.: Greece has been and will remain a critical ally within NATO (vid.)

Featured US Amb.: Greece has been and will remain a critical ally within NATO (vid.)

Greece has been and will remain a critical NATO ally in reinforcing the Alliance's southeastern flank, US Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt said on Wednesday, noting that the past week has served as a reminder of how important that service and that capacity is.

He said he was glad that an evacuation of Greek citizens from the Mariupol area has begun, as well as welcoming the fact that Greece was maintaining its diplomatic representation there. Pyatt saluted his fellow diplomats, the Greek ambassador and consul general, who decided to remain in Mariupol, as well as the Greek journalists that were in the city to document the violence there, including Russian air strikes near Sartana.

The US ambassador went on to say that he was "especially sensitive to the hundreds of years of Hellenistic identity that city possesses" and noted that the last week "has obviously been terribly painful for all of us, as we watched the horrific violence that Russia imposed on the people of Ukraine, through its premeditated invasion of a sovereign, democratic country."

Noting that he had also been horrified by the images of Russian attacks on civilian areas in large European cities, Pyatt said that "we are also heartened by the resilience and the sense of confidence that the brave Ukrainian people have demonstrated."

Citing Tuesday's speech by US President Joe Biden, Pyatt said that the United States will stand with the people of Ukraine and was committed to working jointly with all of its democratic allies and partners in the world to impose a severe cost on Russia for its actions, as well as working with its allies in NATO to defend every square inch of NATO territory.