Greek National Defense Minister Nikos Dendias visited the remote Dodecanese island of Symi on Monday, where he attended the con-celebratory Christmas Day liturgy at the Annunciation of the Virgin Cathedral.

“I want to clearly state my pride for the members of our armed forces, who guard our border islands and our homeland’s shores,” Dendias said in a statement after visiting the Hellenic Navy fast attack craft “Daniolos”, which docked at the port of Symi.

He added that Greek society is obliged to express its best wishes to its armed forces. He also touched on Symi’s rich cultural traditions and natural beauty as well as its major geopolitical importance.

“I had the opportunity to wish a Merry Christmas to the officers and sailors, but also to see how important it is to have people who defend our flag and our homeland in this particular part of our country,” Dendias said.