The new head of the US Department of Defense, Lloyd Austin, held a telephone conversation with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, TASS reports.
The Pentagon Press Office noted that the conversation was Lloyd’s first call to a foreign leader as Secretary of Defense, and he emphasized the importance of the NATO alliance for the United States.
“The leaders discussed the importance of our shared values and the current environment, including maintaining a strong NATO defense and containment position, as well as ongoing missions in Afghanistan and Iraq,” the statement said.
Earlier on Friday, the Senate of the US Congress approved the candidacy of Austin for the post of chief of the Pentagon, nominated by the new US President Joseph Biden.
Note that the 67-year-old Austin will become the first African American to become the US Secretary of Defense. In 2013-2016, he was in charge of the US Central Command.