Mattis, Qatari Counterpart Pledge Continued Cooperation
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Qatari Defense Minister Khalid bin Mohammed al-Attiyah met at the Pentagon today, with both defense leaders expressing the wish that the strong relationship between their nations will continue.
“As we both know, over many years, we have stood together -- both of our militaries -- in the effort to try to stabilize a region of great importance to the international community,” Mattis said to the defense minister before the meeting. “And the relationship between our two militaries, through good times and bad, has been one that we've always taken a great deal of pride in.”
Shared Interests, Friendship
Though shared interests bind the United States and Qatar together, Mattis said, a friendship exists between the two nations’ forces, thanks to Qatar’s hospitality in hosting U.S. forces and providing the infrastructure they need. He added that he looks forward to continuing cooperation in many ways.
Attiyah echoed the secretary’s characterization of the friendship between their nations, and he also pledged continued cooperation.
In a statement released after the meeting, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said the two defense leaders discussed mutual security interests, including the current status of operations against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
“The secretary expressed appreciation for Qatar hosting U.S. forces and emphasized the importance of its contributions to the counter-ISIS coalition,” Davis added.