Hagel Discusses Security Challenges With Canadian Counterpart
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, June 19, 2013 Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel hosted Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay at the Pentagon yesterday, the second meeting between the two defense leaders since Hagel took office, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said.
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel welcomes Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay to the Pentagon, June 18, 2013. The two leaders met to discuss issues of mutual interest. DOD photo by U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Sun L. Vega
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
In a statement summarizing the meeting, Little said Hagel and MacKay discussed a wide range of topics related to their mutual interest in some of the world's ongoing security challenges -- including the situation in Syria, Iran's nuclear program and North Korea's destabilizing activities -- as well as the effort in Afghanistan.
“Over more than a decade of war, Canada has been an instrumental partner in the International Security Assistance Force coalition,” Little said. “Secretary Hagel conveyed his deep appreciation for the significant contributions Canadian troops have made in order to help Afghanistan assume full responsibility for their country's security by the end of 2014.”
The leaders concluded their meeting by acknowledging the success of their nations’ 55-year partnership in North American Aerospace Defense Command. Hagel acknowledged NORAD as a unique example of cooperative defense, essential for the peace and security of both our countries in the 21st century, the press secretary said.
Hagel also said he looks forward to visiting with U.S. and Canadian service members at NORAD in the near future and to accepting MacKay's invitation to attend the Halifax International Security Forum later this year, he added.