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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: NR-255-14
May 18, 2014

Statement by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel on the Passing of Laos Defense Minister Phichit

Lilibet and I were deeply saddened to learn that Laos Defense Minister Douangchay Phichit and his wife, Thanda Phichit, were killed in a plane crash on Saturday, May 17th.

We had the pleasure of hosting Minister Douangchay and Madam Thanda Phichit at the U.S.-ASEAN defense forum last month in Hawaii. I appreciated the opportunity to work with the minister to help advance our two countries’ emerging defense relationship, and to strengthen the U.S.-ASEAN partnership.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, the families of those lost, and the people of Laos.

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