Friday, June 06, 2014

CENTCOM Commander General Austin Visits Lebanon

June 6, 2014 | For Immediate Release

U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) Commander General Lloyd J. Austin III visited Lebanon today and met with Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) Commander General Jean Kahwagi. In his meeting, General Austin commended the LAF on the successful implementation of its security plan in north Lebanon and the Bekaa, and praised the bravery and dedication of LAF personnel in their work to maintain security in Lebanon. General Austin reaffirmed the importance of the professional, military-to-military relationship between the United States and Lebanon as a pillar of Lebanese stability, and underscored U.S. support for Lebanon's efforts.

General Austin highlighted the importance of U.S. assistance to the LAF and CENTCOM's continuing joint effort to strengthen the capacity of the Lebanese Armed Forces in securing Lebanon's borders and defending the sovereignty and independence of the state as Lebanon's sole legitimate defense force. General Austin expressed the United States Government's support for the June 17 Ministerial conference in Rome, as an opportunity to further highlight international support for the LAF.

General Austin emphasized the enduring commitment of the United States to Lebanon, its security institutions, and preventing spillover from the Syrian conflict into Lebanon.