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Immediate Release

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin's Bilateral Meeting With U.K. Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace

Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby provided the following readout:

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III met U.K. Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace today at the Pentagon to reaffirm the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom.

The leaders discussed the importance of transatlantic cooperation and burden sharing to address a wide range of security challenges across the globe. They also discussed strategic competition with a focus on Europe and the Indo-Pacific region, ongoing operations in the Middle East, and the withdrawal from Afghanistan.  

Secretary Austin committed to continuing consultations with the United Kingdom on strategic reviews, including the National Defense Strategy.  Secretary of State for Defence Wallace highlighted the United Kingdom’s investments in defense modernization and increased focus on the Indo-Pacific region.

The leaders look forward to deepening U.S.-U.K. defense cooperation. To this end, they signed a one-year extension of the U.S.-U.K. Statement of Intent Regarding Enhanced Cooperation on Carrier Operations and Maritime Power Projection.

After their meeting, Secretary Austin joined Secretary of State Wallace at Arlington National Cemetery to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.