Athens-Benghazi Flights to Commence in March


The Greek Consul to Libya, Stavros Venizelos, said that the first flight between Benghazi’s Benina Airport and Athens’ Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport is set to take place on March 2nd.

The confirmation follows an earlier announcement by the Greek Embassy in Benghazi that Marathon Airlines had operated its maiden test flight between Athens and Benghazi on January 29th.

Two weekly flights on its 88-seat Embraer 175 aircraft are planned by Marathon Airlines.

The Athens trip will be the first foreign flight to and from Benghazi’s Benina airport to utilise the new Berniq Terminal, according to Venizelos’s confirmation. He hoped that the flights would contribute in some way to the limited cargo shipments that could be carried by aircraft.

Earlier this month, the Consulate General of Greece in Benghazi announced that from Sunday the 12th of February 2023, Schengen visas for Greece will be handled through the Visa Application Center operated by VFS Global.

In a statement, the Consulate confirmed that the electronic appointments must be made only through the website

It added that the website contains all the information on the application, required documents, fees, working days and hours, help centre telephone number and email. The information is in English and it will be in Arabic very soon.

According to the statement, the address of VFS Global for Greece is Fouwaihet, Errahba, Benghazi. “On the day of the appointment, applicants must present themselves at the above-mentioned address having with them all the required original documents.”

The statement stressed that all submissions of visa applications or receptions of visa through VFS Global have to be done on an individual basis by the applicant. It is prohibited to be done through any mediator, representative, relatives or tourist agent.

It stated that the only exception is for parents with children under the legal age. “Any child under the legal age has to be present, with her/his parents, for the submission of the application.”

Last month, Greece’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs delivered a note verbale to the Libyan Embassy in Athens, refuting claims of ‘illegal’ actions by seismic research vessel Sanco Swift, according to Greece’s Ekathimerini newspaper.

In a statement, the Ministry said the maritime research, south of the Peloponnese and Southwest of Crete, “is carried out in regions of Greek jurisdiction, according to the rules of the international law of the sea. The coordinates of the regions where research is taking place are accessible to all interested parties, through relevant Navtex announcements.”

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed that Greece “welcomes the reference by the Libyan side to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).”

It reminded the Libyan side that “the two illegal and unfounded memorandums of understanding it signed with Turkey in November 2019, and October 2022 are blatantly violating key regulations of UNCLOS, that also reflect rules of customary international law.”

In addition, it underlined that “these illegal memoranda ignore and violate Greece’s sovereign rights over its continental shelf. As well as its sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Exclusive Economic Zone.”

The Ministry also stated its “desire for the resumption of bilateral collaboration, in a spirit of mutual trust, in the context of the historic ties of friendship between the two countries and their peoples.”