Assistant Press Secretary Carl Woog provided the following readout:
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met with Latvia’s Minister of Defense Raimonds Vejonis here today. Secretary Hagel congratulated Minister Vejonis on recent progress Latvia has made towards increasing their defense spending.
Among the topics discussed were efforts taken to date to demonstrate U.S. and allied commitment to the Baltic region as well as ongoing efforts to provide persistent presence in the area, ranging from augmented NATO air policing to the deployment of company-size rotational forces to the Baltic states and Poland. Secretary Hagel said we would continue to work with NATO to broaden support – a focal point of efforts at the NATO Summit.
Finally, Secretary Hagel and Minister Vejonis discussed further opportunities for regional cooperation as discussed in last August’s Baltic Summit at the White House. The secretary stressed that the U.S. will continue to work with the Baltic States to support regional cooperation, interoperability with allies and long-term defense modernization.