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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: NR-277-14
May 31, 2014

Readout of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's Meeting with Vietnam's Defense Minister Gen. Phung Quang Thanh

Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby provided the following readout:

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met in Singapore today with Vietnam's defense minister, Gen. Phung Quang Thanh. The two met on the sidelines of the annual Shangri-La Dialogue, a major annual forum for key leaders in the Asia-Pacific region to discuss security challenges and opportunities.

Secretary Hagel and Gen. Thanh discussed a number of security challenges facing the region, including their mutual concerns over the recent provocative behavior by the Chinese in the South China Sea.

Secretary Hagel thanked the Vietnamese for their continued leadership within ASEAN, as both leaders reaffirmed the growing role of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in addressing the regional issues such as maritime security and disaster response.

Secretary Hagel also thanked Gen. Thanh for Vietnam's ongoing support for our efforts to locate American service members still missing in action in Vietnam, as well as for hosting the upcoming visit by the Secretary of the Navy to their country.

Gen. Thanh invited Secretary Hagel to visit Vietnam to continue building cooperative defense ties. Secretary Hagel thanked Gen. Thanh for the invitation and said he looked forward to a visit later this year. 

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