Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for African Affairs Pete Marocco and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Minister of Defense Lemma Megerssa co-chaired the 9th annual U.S.-Ethiopia Bilateral Defense Committee in Washington, District of Columbia, Dec. 4.
During the visit, the United States and Ethiopia shared views on regional security, peacekeeping, intelligence and military relations, with the goal of strengthening their security partnership. Both nations reaffirmed their commitment to the U.S-Ethiopia bilateral relationship and highlighted the significant increase in security cooperation between the two countries over the last 18 months.
The Ethiopian delegation also met with performing the Duties of Deputy Under Secretary of Defense James Anderson and the Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence Joseph Kernan. Anderson thanked Ethiopia for their leadership and military contributions throughout the region and commended Lemma for the ongoing security sector reforms Ethiopia is undertaking. U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia Michael Raynor expressed gratitude to the Ethiopian government and the Ethiopian National Defense Force for their participation, continued close partnership and commitment to future collaboration.
The Bilateral Defense Committee enables the United States and Ethiopia to identify new opportunities for bilateral collaboration in areas such as counterterrorism and intelligence, which enhances an already robust partnership between the two countries, and helps bring peace and security to East Africa.