During their first meeting together at the Pentagon April 16, U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and Chilean Minister of National Defense Jorge Burgos (above) discussed a range of topics related to security and cooperation throughout Central and South America.
According to a statement from the Pentagon’s press secretary, Rear Admiral John Kirby, Hagel recognized Chile's strong partnerships throughout Central America as an important contribution to stability in the region and expressed interest in trilateral cooperation initiatives there. He also noted Chile's engagements in the Pacific region as another area for collaboration.
Hagel thanked Burgos for his continued partnership and said he looks forward to meeting with the minister again at the Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas in Peru in October, Kirby said.
The Obama administration has been seeking to strengthen its relations with Chile and other nations in Latin America. Vice President Biden visited Chile in March to attend the inauguration of President Michelle Bachelet. While there, Biden also met with leaders from across Latin America to discuss important issues facing the Americas.
A White House fact sheet says the United States looks forward to consulting closely with Chile as a member of the U.N. Security Council and a member of the U.N. Human Rights Council.