BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan (Nov. 17, 2010) — Gen. James Mattis, the Commander of U.S. Central Command, made his first visit to Kyrgyzstan today. Gen. Mattis met with President Otunbayeva, Minister of Defense Abibilla Kudaiberdev, Chairman of the State Committee for National Security General-Lieutentant Keneshbek Dushebayev and other government ministers.
Before his meetings, Mattis took a walk around Bishkek to get a sense of the city and its people.
During his visits with the civilian and military leadership, the commander listened to Kyrgyz views and gained their perspectives on regional security issues. Mattis expressed his appreciation to Kyrgyzstan for its support of the Transit Center, as well as the key role Kyrgyzstan has played in the coalition effort in Afghanistan.The two sides discussed areas of mutual interest, such as training and the economic impact of US operations.
Mattis also toured the Transit Center, spent time with US troops, and discussed the military’s humanitarian assistance projects, such as the renovation of schools near Bishkek.