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Immediate Release

Readout of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's meeting with the Tunisian Minister of Defense Ghazi Jeribi

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

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met with the Tunisian Minister of Defense Ghazi Jeribi here, today. Secretary Hagel kicked off the meeting by congratulating Minister Jeribi for the successful parliamentary elections underway in Tunisia, and praised their process as an important model for the region.

Following on previous bilateral discussions during the May 2014 Joint Military Commission in Tunis, Minister Jeribi and Secretary Hagel discussed ways in which the U.S. and Tunisia could cooperate in fighting terrorism, given continuing instability in the region.

The two leaders also discussed the growing regional concern over foreign fighters from North Africa moving to Iraq and Syria, as well as the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and other al Qaeda splinter groups emerging in Africa.

The meeting wrapped up with Minister Jeribi thanking the U.S. for the ongoing security cooperation programs, and Secretary Hagel underscored the strong U.S. commitment for continued support to Tunisia.