Pentagon Press Secretary George Little provided the following readout:
“Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met with Spain’s Minister of Defense Pedro Morenès today during the NATO Defense Ministerial.
“Secretary Hagel praised Spain for its critical support for a number of U.S. national security priorities, for its role as a NATO ally, and expressed his appreciation for Spain's support and sacrifices in Afghanistan.
“Secretary Hagel also noted that because of Spain’s agreement to host four Aegis ships at Rota, the alliance is significantly boosting its combined naval capabilities in the Mediterranean, which will offer increased opportunities to partner on exercises, training, and maritime operations, and ultimately enhance both regional and global security.
“Secretary Hagel thanked Minister Morenès for its recent agreement to host a U.S. Marine crisis response unit for at least one year, which will allow the United States to provide rapid and responsive support to U.S. embassy staff in the U.S. Africa and U.S. Central Commands, as needed. The two secretaries agreed that their staffs will continue to seek ways to broaden and deepen our important bilateral defense relationship.”