Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel hosted the Netherlands’ Minister of Defense Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert at the Pentagon today, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said.
Little said Hagel strongly emphasized the importance of the Netherlands as both a bilateral partner and North Atlantic Treaty Organization ally, and on behalf of the Department of Defense, reemphasized the commitment of the U.S. to the strong United States-Netherlands defense partnership.
Hagel and Minister Hennis-Plasschaert discussed a range of issues, including the Joint Strike Fighter program, NATO’s role in post-2014 Afghanistan, and Syria, Little said.
On JSF, Hagel underscored U.S. commitment to the program and encouraged continued cooperation between the U.S. and the Netherlands in its development, Little said.
Hagel thanked Minister Hennis-Plasschaert for the Netherlands’ decision to support the NATO Patriot missile deployment to Turkey, Little said, and he stressed the need for continued international cooperation on the ongoing crisis in Syria.