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

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

Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis met with Turkish Minister of Defense Nurettin Canikli yesterday at the NATO Defense Ministerial to discuss defense-related issues of mutual concern, and reaffirmed the longstanding defense relationship between the U.S. and Turkey.

Secretary Mattis praised bilateral efforts in Syria to develop a sustainable long-term arrangement in Manbij to address Turkey's security concerns,  ensure stability and security in the region, and remain focused on the fight against ISIS.  

Secretary Mattis encouraged further cooperation to promote local governance acceptable to all parties, and the two leaders agreed to continue strengthening U.S.-Turkey defense cooperation.