Mattis Meets With Turkish Defense Minister in Brussels
In a meeting with his Turkish counterpart on the sidelines of a NATO defense ministers conference in Brussels yesterday, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis recognized Turkey’s contributions to the alliance and welcomed a transparent dialogue with an ally facing significant threats -- within and outside its borders, a spokesperson for Mattis said in a statement.
Navy Cmdr. Sarah Higgins said Mattis also assured Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Işik of the support of the United States as a strategic partner in the campaign to counter the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
The secretary and minister agreed to continue their full range of bilateral defense activities and consultations, and to look for ways to further strengthen defense cooperation in the future, Higgins added.
Mattis is in Brussels to attend the defense ministers conference and to meet with partners in the coalition countering ISIS. He also will attend the Munich Security Conference in Germany during this overseas trip.