On November 2nd 2018, NATO Rapid Deployable Corps - Greece (NRDC-GR) celebrated the Italian National Unity and Armed Forces Day, with a flag raising ceremony. The event honored with their presence, the Deputy Commander NRDC-GR Major General Ivan ORTOMAROV, the Honorary Consul of Italy Mr Christos SARANTOPOULOS, the entire HQ staff as well as family members and Italian invitees living in Thessaloniki.
Brigadier General Vittorio Antonio STELLA, the Senior National Representative of Italy, addressed the HQ on the meaning of the day, stating that on November the 4th, Italy celebrates the National Unity and Armed Forces Day, in remembrance of the glorious end of World War I.
Furthermore he added “Today’s tribute is therefore to commemorate one hundred years later the historical date which marked for Italy on the 4th of November 1918 the end of WW I, the "Great War", as a result of the long struggle for the liberation of the Italian territory from the Austro-Hungarian occupation, with the entry of the Italian victorious troops in Trento and Trieste.”
Additionally, he emphasized the support of Italian volunteers and garibaldinians to Hellenic patriots during the Greek independence wars. “After that, the tribute of the Italian blood in favor of the common ideal of freedom continued during the Great War, under the Italian TRICOLORE, green, white and red vertically striped to recall the country's plains and hills; the white snow-capped Alps; and the blood generously spilt in the war of independence and unification”, he added.
Concluding his speech the Italian National Representative expressed his gratitude to Greece and NRDC-GR HQ, for celebrating together this unique commemoration, on the centennial of the end of WWI.
Deputy Commander of NRDC-GR congratulated the entire Italian contingent and representatives for this day and expressed his appreciation for the significant contribution of the Italian staff to all the last years’ successes. After the ceremony a small reception was held in the HQ where traditional homemade tastes were offered and cultural events took place.