Today (Tuesday) Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant was hosted by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon.

During the meeting, the parties discussed the operations required to ensure the destruction of the Hamas terrorist organization, as well as ongoing efforts to ensure the release of the hostages held by Hamas in Gaza. Minister Gallant also raised strategic issues, emphasizing the important cooperation between the Israeli and U.S. defense establishments to ensure Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region.

Minister Gallant was joined by the Director General of the Ministry of Defense, Chief of Staff, Military Secretary, Director of the Policy and Pol-Mil Bureau, Ambassador of Israel to the United States, and Israel’s Defense Attache.

Gallant said at the start of the meeting, “My friend Secretary Austin, it is my honor to be here in the United States, Thank you for hosting us."

"Over the past six months, we have been fighting a war against a brutal terrorist organization in Gaza. We also face attacks from 7 different fronts - all led by Iran.

He noted, "While I sit here in the Pentagon, Hamas leader Haniyeh is meeting with Iranian leadership. The picture is clear."

"Today, we will discuss developments in Gaza And the means to achieve our goals: The destruction of Hamas and return of the hostages home. The negotiations on the hostage issue and Hamas positions, require us to join hands in our military and diplomatic efforts, and to increase pressure [on Hamas].

"I will also raise the growing threats on our northern border, and our commitment to returning displaced communities to their homes. We will also discuss strategic issues and the important cooperation between our establishments, which will ensure Israel’s military edge and capabilities.

"Mr. Secretary, once again, I would like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation for your bold leadership and friendship, and the powerful bond with the United States," Gallant concluded.