WASHINGTON, July 11, 2014 —
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Israeli Defense Minister Moshe “Bogie” Yaalon spoke by phone this morning about the events unfolding in Israel and Gaza, Carl Woog, assistant Pentagon press secretary, said.
In a statement summarizing the call, Woog said Hagel reiterated his condolences on the recent kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers and expressed U.S. condemnation of continuing rocket fire into Israel by Hamas and other terrorist organizations.
“The secretary reaffirmed Israel's right to defend itself against these attacks,” Woog said. “He also expressed concern about the risk of further escalation and emphasized the need for all sides to do everything they can to protect the lives of civilians and restore calm.”
The two leaders agreed to speak again soon and to continue working closely on the broad range of security issues facing the United States and Israel, Woog said.