Greece must defend the major national issues relating to its existence as a people and a nation with absolute, unbroken unity, President of the Hellenic Republic Prokopios Pavlopoulos said on Sunday. He was speaking at an event on the island of Hydra to mark the 183rd anniversary since the death of Admiral Andreas Miaoulis, the commander of the Greek fleet in the war of independence against Ottoman rule.

Pavlopoulos, who laid a wreath before a statue of Miaoulis, noted that his life had a message with two aspects for the Greek people:

"The first aspect reminds us of our national duty, as this was expressed down the centuries by the Athenian Ephebic Oath: 'I will not leave my country smaller, when I die, but greater and better, so far as I am able.

"The second aspect reminds us that, mainly in our national issues, existential issues for our people and our nation, we have an obligation to defend these on terms of absolute unity. Because history will not forgive us ignorance [of the fact] that we, as Greeks, have only done great things in conditions of complete unity, whereas division and discord have cost us dear," he said.