Hagel Calls Israeli Counterpart to Express Condolences
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Jan. 13, 2014 Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called Israeli Defense Minister Moshe "Boogie" Yaalon this morning to offer his deepest condolences on the death of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said.
Sharon, 85, died Jan. 11. The former general and political leader had been in a coma since suffering a debilitating stroke in January 2006.
“Secretary Hagel praised Prime Minister Sharon as a leader who dedicated his life to defending Israel's security,” Kirby said in a statement summarizing the call. “The secretary shared with Minister Yaalon that he greatly admired the former prime minister and appreciated the strong relationship that they had formed during the secretary's time in the Senate.”
The two defense leaders reaffirmed the strength of the U.S-Israeli defense relationship, Kirby added, and pledged to continue to work closely together on the shared challenges that the United States and Israel face.