IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Readout of Secretary Mattis' Meeting with Australian Minister of Defense Marise Payne


Pentagon Chief Spokesperson Dana W. White provided the following readout:
 
September 20, 2017
 
On September 20, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis hosted Australian Minister of Defense Marise Payne for a bilateral meeting to discuss our robust defense relationship and the regional security challenges we continue to face.
 
Secretary Mattis expressed his sincere and deep appreciation to Minister Payne for Australia's assistance in the search, rescue, and recovery efforts in early August following the MV-22 Osprey incident that took the lives of three Marines off the Australian coast. Secretary Mattis also highlighted the upcoming celebration of the first hundred years of "Mateship" that underpins the ironclad Australia-U.S. alliance.  The relationship is built from tight bonds of trust, respect and friendship.
 
The two leaders also discussed concerns about destabilizing actions in the South China Sea and the threat posed by North Korea.  They emphasized the importance of the international community coming together to hold Kim Jong-Un's regime accountable and pressuring North Korea to give up their illegal nuclear weapons program.
 
Secretary Mattis and Minister Payne also reaffirmed their continued commitment and support to address the growing threat from ISIS and other extremist groups, particularly in Southeast Asia.