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Carter, Dutch Counterpart Discuss Bilateral Defense Relationship

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WASHINGTON, November 23, 2015 — Defense Secretary Ash Carter met today with Dutch Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert at the Pentagon.

In a statement summarizing the meeting, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said the two defense leaders last met in October at the NATO defense ministerial in Brussels, Belgium.

Carter and Hennis-Plasschaert discussed the U.S.-Dutch defense relationship, Cook said, including the Dutch role in the counter-Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant coalition and the European security environment after the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris.

Contributions to NATO Deterrence

The secretary thanked Hennis-Plasschaert for the Netherlands' progress toward meeting the NATO target of its member nations spending 2 percent of their gross domestic product on defense, and for the Dutch contribution to joint NATO deterrence efforts, Cook said.

They also discussed the Netherlands' participation in the F-35 program in advance of Hennis-Plasschaert's visit to the Dutch detachment at Edwards Air Force Base, California, where Dutch planes and pilots are participating in F-35 testing, the press secretary said, adding that the defense leaders agreed to continue their in-depth dialogue on defense issues.