Washington: US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta on Sunday met his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian, to discuss plans for transition in Afghanistan.
"Today Secretary Panetta met with French Minister of Defense Jean-Yves Le Drian to discuss the upcoming NATO Summit and plans for transition in Afghanistan," the Pentagon said in a statement.
"Panetta and Le Drian discussed strategies for investing in defence during times of austerity and looked forward to the conversation on defense capabilities at the NATO Chicago Summit," the Pentagon said in a statement.
This was the first meeting between the two leaders after Le Drian took over following recent elections in France.
The US Defense Secretary congratulated Le Drian on his appointment as Defence Minister.
Panetta emphasised the outstanding cooperation between the two nations on many defense issues, and thanked Le Drian particularly for the significant contributions that France has made to ISAF.
The two ministers committed to working closely together on Iran, Syria, and the Arab Spring, where Secretary Panetta praised French leadership and resolve in addressing these challenges, the Pentagon said.