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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs provides services for Greek citizens and Greeks abroad which pertain to procedural transactions (e.g. administrative affairs, translations and certificates) and in case of emergencies, provides assistance through the Greek Missions abroad and the E3 Department at the Ministry.
The specific services provided for by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as those that are provided for in conjunction with other Ministries or other public agents, are listed below.
The Foreign Ministry contacts agencies responsible for Maritime Affairs in specific cases:
• Upon receiving relevant notification, the E3 Directorate informs the Foreign Ministry’s Missions Abroad so that they may assist Greek merchant mariners and see to their rescue in case of shipwreck.
• Via the Foreign Ministry’s Foreign Service Missions, the E3 Directorate sees to the repatriation of stranded Greek merchant mariners, in collaboration with the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Islands and Fisheries.
• The Foreign Service’s Consular Authorities are responsible for validating merchant mariners’ documents.
• The Foreign Service’s Missions, in cooperation with the Ministry’s E3 Directorate, see to the transportation of the remains of deceased Greek merchant mariners.
• In the case of an accident or shipwreck involving vessels sailing under the Greek flag or within the jurisdiction of the Greek Authorities, the Foreign Ministry’s E3 Directorate notifies foreign Diplomatic and Consular Authorities in Greece regarding merchant mariners from their countries serving on said vessels.
• The E3 Directorate forwards requests from Greek authorities to the competent authorities of foreign states in cases, for example, of notices of seizure and auction of vessels.
Arrests, Preliminary Hearings, Detentions, Incarcerations of Greeks abroad
In the above cases, the Foreign Ministry’s E3 Directorate monitors developments and is in constant contact with the Mission Abroad responsible for the region in which a Greek citizen has been arrested or detained. The given Mission Abroad will take any actions concerning, for example, visits to detainees and provision of a list of local lawyers.
In the case of a death abroad of a Greek citizen or citizen of Greek origin, relatives of the deceased in Greece can apply to the Foreign Ministry’s E3 Directorate to look into whether there is a will at the relevant Greek Consular Authority and, if a will exists, request that it be published.
Delivery of Legal Documents
Civil and penal legal documents can be conveyed for delivery to and from the competent Greek Judicial Authorities via the Foreign Ministry’s E3 Directorate, as well as to and from involved Greek parties by Greece’s Consular Authorities.
It is to be noted that despite the fact that the Authorities Abroad try to deliver legal documents, Greeks abroad are not obliged to take receipt of the legal documents in question, and, as such, the delivery procedure is not always effective.
Moreover, foreign legal documents are also conveyed for delivery via Missions abroad and, subsequently, the Foreign Ministry’s E3 Directorate.
Transport of bodily remains
If a Greek dies abroad, relatives or friends of the deceased should contact the nearest Consular Authority to facilitate the transport of the remains of the deceased (corpse, bones, ashes), according to the customs that the deceased’s loved ones want to observe. In terms of procedure, the necessary paperwork (death certificate, health code paperwork) – as stipulated by the legislation of the foreign state where the deceased’s remains are – needs to be brought to the Consular Authority in question.