Hagel meets with Chinese official to discuss military relationship

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met with China's State Councilor Yang Jiechi at the Pentagon on Friday to talk about the military relationship between the U.S. and China.

Hagel expressed the support of the Defense Department for the Strategic and Economic Dialogue and the related Strategic Security Dialogue and Cyber Working Group. Hagel said he was pleased the day-long security dialogue grew this year to include missile defense and nuclear policy issues.

Hagel also affirmed the necessity of the inaugural cyber discussion. The talks on cyber-related issues will represent a platform to build better understanding and improve practical cooperation in cyberspace and on regional security issues of concern to both China and the U.S., including North Korea.

Hagel congratulated Yang on his promotion during the meeting. The two leaders discussed their shared history and a friendship that goes back many years to their prior positions in service of their governments.

Hagel told Yang that he is looking forward to hosting China's Minister of National Defense General Chang Wanquan at the Pentagon in August.

During the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, China and the U.S. committed to strengthening their military-to-military relationship. Hagel will make a reciprocal visit to China at a mutually convenient date in 2014.