ATHENS – The British government has donated a new 25-million euro communication system to the Greek police and it’s expected to go into operation over the next four to six months.
Public Order Ministry officials told Kathimerini that the new platform, manufactured by Cambridge-based Sepura, is technologically superior to the previous system by the Siemens-SAIC consortium, acquired for the Athens 2004 Olympics, which led to a scandal.
Officials said renewing the 10-year Siemens-SAIC contract, which expired in July, was too costly.Sepura was selected by Lamas Pinto Consultants Corporation, which is based in New York.
A group of unnamed Greek businessmen also donated to the purchase and the police will get free maintenance for the system for a year, after which bids will be sought for the work.
No more details were made available about the deal, which came after month-long negotiations led by Public Order Minister Vassilis Kikilias and Secretary-General Thanassis Andreoulakos.
The system will include dispatcher terminals installed in police control rooms together with gateways to provide connectivity to telephony systems.
British police recently provided ELAS with a wiretapping system, similar to the one used by Greece’s intelligence service and counter-terrorism unit.
In a related development, ELAS was in the coming days expected to announce a deal to buy unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), better known as drones. The drones will be used to monitor the country’s borders and curb illegal immigration.