Readout From Secretary James N. Mattis' Bilateral Meeting With Ukraine Minister of Defense

Pentagon Chief Spokesperson Dana W. White provided the following readout:

Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis met his Ukrainian counterpart, Minister of Defence Stepan Poltorak, at the Pentagon today.

Secretary Mattis emphasized the value of the U.S.-Ukraine security partnership. He praised Minister Poltorak for his country's sustained courage in the face of Russian aggression, and reiterated U.S. support for Ukrainian defense reform goals. He cited the Law on National Security as an urgent priority, and expressed his hope that the Presidential Administration and Ukraine's parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, take swift action and pass legislation that ensures a solid legal basis for the implementation of defense reforms in support of a secure and democratic Ukraine.

The two leaders pledged to strengthen a lasting partnership between the U.S. and Ukraine built on common security interests and shared principles.