CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will travel to Pakistan on Monday for talks with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and other senior officials, as the first Pentagon chief to visit Islamabad in nearly four years, a spokesman said.
Hagel announced the Pakistan trip while talking to U.S. troops at Camp Leatherneck in southwestern Afghanistan, where he is on a two-day visit to consult with senior U.S. and Afghan officials and pay a holiday tribute to American forces.
KABUL (Reuters) – A NATO meeting in February could become a new deadline for a security pact between the United States and Afghanistan, whose president has been reluctant to sign the deal, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on visit to Kabul.
Hagel arrived in Afghanistan on Saturday to visit troops and senior Afghan officials but, unusually, did not plan to meet President Hamid Karzai, who has resisted signing the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) which would govern the U.S. military presence after most NATO forces leave by the end of next year.
MANAMA (Reuters) – Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel told Gulf Arab leaders on Saturday that the United States has a proven and enduring commitment to Middle East security, backed by diplomatic engagement as well as warplanes, ships, tanks, artillery and 35,000 troops.
The U.S. defense secretary, speaking at a regional security forum, acknowledged Gulf leaders’ concerns about the direction of U.S. policy in the Middle East, especially negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program. But he said the U.S. emphasis on diplomacy should not be misinterpreted.
KABUL (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Afghanistan for a weekend visit on Saturday but had no plans to meet President Hamid Karzai amid tensions over his refusal to sign a deal governing the post-2014 U.S. military presence, a senior U.S. official said.
Hagel was expected to visit U.S. and international troops across the country and to hold talks with Defense Minister Bismillah Khan Mohammadi and Interior Minister Umer Daudzai, a Pentagon spokesman, Carl Woog, said in a statement.
MANAMA, Dec 7 (Reuters) – The United States has a proven and
enduring commitment to Middle East security, backed by
diplomatic engagement and a fierce array of warplanes, ships,
tanks, artillery and 35,000 troops, Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel
told Gulf Arab leaders on Saturday.
The U.S. defense secretary, speaking at a regional security
forum, acknowledged Gulf leaders’ concerns about the direction
of U.S. policy in the Middle East, especially negotiations on
Iran’s nuclear program. But he said the U.S. emphasis on
diplomacy should not be misinterpreted.
MANAMA, Dec 7 (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel
said on Saturday the United States would maintain a wide array
of military forces in the Middle East to ensure security in the
volatile region despite diplomatic overtures toward Iran over
its nuclear program.
Hagel, in prepared remarks to the Manama Dialogue security
forum in Bahrain, said the Pentagon had no plan to adjust its
military presence or planning in the region as a result of an
interim accord on Tehran’s nuclear enrichment program.
MANAMA (Reuters) – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel toured an anti-mine warfare ship in the U.S. Fifth Fleet on Friday to underscore U.S. commitment to Middle East security despite policy differences over Iran and Syria that have angered Washington’s longtime Gulf allies.
His visit to Bahrain, in which he will also speak at the Manama Dialogue security conference, came at a time of regional unease over President Barack Obama’s policies ranging from the cautious U.S. response to Syria’s civil war to the six world powers’ interim deal with Iran on its nuclear program.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government has begun outfitting a ship in its reserve ready force with equipment to enable it to destroy some of Syria’s chemical weapons at sea in the event Washington is asked to assist in the effort, a defense official said on Sunday.
The Maritime Administration vessel MV Cape Ray is being equipped with the newly developed Field Deployable Hydrolysis System, which was designed by the Defense Department to neutralize components used in chemical weapons, a defense official said on condition of anonymity.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A maritime services company that had millions of dollars in contracts suspended by the U.S. Navy this week says the action stemmed from a billing dispute probed by the Justice Department several years ago, and it hopes to resolve the issue quickly.
The Navy said on Wednesday it had suspended all contracts with British-based Inchcape Shipping Services Holding Ltd, a unit of Dubai World, because of questionable conduct.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Navy said on Wednesday it has suspended a maritime services company from doing business with the U.S. government due to questionable conduct, the second firm barred in a widening corruption probe that has resulted in action against seven Navy officials.
The Navy suspended British-based Inchcape Shipping Services Holding Ltd. and its affiliated companies from contracting with the U.S. government on November 26, Rear Admiral John Kirby, a Navy spokesman, said in a statement.