U.S. Defense Secretary arrives in Saudi Arabia

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday as part of a regional tour that will also take him to Jordan and Israel.

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday as part of a regional tour that will also take him to Jordan and Israel.

RIYADH – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday as part of a regional tour that will also take him to Jordan and Israel.

Hagel was welcomed at the King Abdelaziz International Airport by Saudi Vice Defense Minister Salman bin Sultan.

During his visit to the oil-rich kingdom, Hagel will participate in a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) defense ministers' conference, according to the U.S. Defense Department.

"Secretary Hagel expressed his appreciation for Saudi leaders hosting the U.S.-GCC Strategic Defense Dialogue, the first meeting of its kind since 2008," Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said in a statement.

According to the Pentagon, the GCC meeting is aimed at reassuring U.S. allies of Washington's commitment to the region.

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