17:13 Sep. 7, 2016
Ash Carter plans several bilateral meetings during his stay in the UK
Secretary of Defence Ash Carter plans to meet his counterparts from Ukraine, Turkey, and Israel.
"While I'm in London, I'll have an additional sequence of bilateral meetings with three very important counterparts from Turkey, Ukraine, and also Israel. We have a lot to discuss with each and everyone." – said Carter during a media event before departing.
He also stated the importance of the Minsk agreements and the role of the UK in it: "Britain was a staunch supporter of the Minsk process, and one of the things that buttressed the Minsk process and kept Russia in the Minsk process was the solidarity of the E.U. behind the sanctions. And that needs to continue. Even though Britain will not be a member, I'm hoping that Britain will continue to use its influence, not as a member, but as a member of the European family to make sure that that policy is continued because Minsk is important."
While in the UK, US Secretary of Defence will also be meeting with his colleague Secretary Fallon and take part in the first ever U.N. peacekeeping ministerial in London. U.S. diplomats are trying to persuade Russia to take steps toward a true ceasefire in Syria and to nudge Damascus toward a political transition, but news out of Syria is "not encouraging," Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Wednesday.
During his European trip, Secretary Carter is also planning to visit Norway.