Cyprus on Tuesday along with Belgium, France, Estonia, and Hungary signed a letter of intent to jointly procure Mistral anti-aircraft missiles.

The letter was signed by defence ministry permanent secretary Andreas P Loucas, who was in Paris for the Aerospace exhibition at Le Bourget airport.

The Letter of Intent was co-signed by the defence ministers of Belgium, France, Estonia, and Hungary.

Subsequently, he participated in the last part of the conference on European Air Defence, held at the level of defence ministers.

The purpose of the conference was to exchange views regarding the strategic aspects of protecting Europe from air and missile threats.

Loucas, in his intervention, said that Europe must improve its air defence capabilities so that it is possible to protect against the entire spectrum of aerial threats, in a 360° approach that will include all European states.

He also noted that the participation to the maximum extent possible of the European defence industry will reduce dependencies in this sensitive sector, strengthening European autonomy and that it is in this context that the Republic of Cyprus participates in the joint Mistral procurement programme.

The conference ended with closing remarks by French President Emmanuel Macron.