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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: NR-056-13
December 09, 2013

Readout of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's Visit to Saudi Arabia

Assistant Press Secretary Carl Woog provided the following readout:

This evening, Secretary Hagel visited Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to meet with the Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Secretary Hagel and the crown prince, who serves as the minister of defense, agreed that the United States and Saudi Arabia are firmly committed to their strong defense relationship and discussed the mutual goal of achieving security and stability in the region. 

Secretary Hagel conveyed that the United States is fully committed to its security partnership with Saudi Arabia and seeks to deepen its cooperation even further. They discussed Iran, in the context of the recently concluded joint action plan with the P5+1. Secretary Hagel underscored the United States commitment to preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon and maintaining a strong American defense presence in the region. 

Secretary Hagel also discussed the proposals he announced at the Manama Dialogue in Bahrain, in particular to hold a U.S. -- GCC Defense Ministerial meeting in the region within the next six months.

Prior to his meeting with the crown prince, Secretary Hagel met with Deputy Minister of Defense Prince Salman bin Sultan. They discussed a number of regional issues including Afghanistan and Pakistan. Secretary Hagel invited him to visit the United States early next year to meet with senior U.S. military leaders.