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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 988-12
December 17, 2012

Readout of Secretary Panetta’s Meeting with Norwegian Minister of Defense Strom-Erichsen

            Press Secretary George Little provided the following statement: 

            “Today at the Pentagon, Secretary Leon Panetta met with Norway's Minister of Defense Anne-Grete Strom-Erichsen.  The secretary expressed his gratitude for Norway's continuing support to operations in Afghanistan and for its steadfast commitment to NATO.  The secretary underscored the importance of Norway's involvement in alliance operations, and praised Norway for expediting its acquisition of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.  The secretary highlighted the importance of defense spending and developing future alliance interoperability through the NATO Response Force.  Having both recently returned from visiting Turkey, the leaders discussed the upcoming NATO deployment of Patriot batteries and strong support for our ally. They also discussed the strategic importance of access to the Arctic.”