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Carter, Israeli Defense Minister Discuss Security Issues

June 20, 2016 , DOD News

During a bilateral meeting at the Pentagon today, Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Lieberman reaffirmed the strength of the U.S.-Israeli defense relationship, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said in a statement.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Daniel “Tonto” Kitts, an F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter test pilot assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 23, landed in the history books when he performed the first arrestment of an F-35C Lightning II with external weapons at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Feb. 10, 2016. This week, Israel will be the first U.S. partner to receive the F-35. Navy photo by Dane Wiedmann
Navy Lt. Cmdr. Daniel Kitts performs the first arrestment of an F-35C Lightning II with external weapons at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Feb. 10, 2016. This week, Israel will be the first U.S. partner to receive the F-35. Navy photo by Dane Wiedmann
Navy Lt. Cmdr. Daniel “Tonto” Kitts, an F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter test pilot assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 23, landed in the history books when he performed the first arrestment of an F-35C Lightning II with external weapons at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Feb. 10, 2016. This week, Israel will be the first U.S. partner to receive the F-35. Navy photo by Dane Wiedmann
First Arrestment of an F-35C with External Weapons
Navy Lt. Cmdr. Daniel Kitts performs the first arrestment of an F-35C Lightning II with external weapons at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Feb. 10, 2016. This week, Israel will be the first U.S. partner to receive the F-35. Navy photo by Dane Wiedmann
Photo By: Dane Wiedmann
VIRIN: 160210-N-ZZ999-410

Carter also reaffirmed the United States' unwavering commitment to Israel's security, the press secretary said.

The two leaders also discussed regional security challenges in the Middle East and areas of mutual defense cooperation, he said.

During Lieberman's visit to the United States, Cook said, he will also travel to Fort Worth, Texas, for a ceremony as the first F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter aircraft destined for Israel rolls off the production line.

Israel will be the first U.S. partner to receive the F-35, which will play a key role in maintaining Israel's qualitative military edge in the Middle East, the press secretary said.