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NEWS | March 22, 2024

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III's Meeting With President Wesley Simina of the Federated States of Micronesia

U.S. Department of Defense

Pentagon Press Secretary Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder provided the following readout:

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III hosted President Wesley Simina of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) at the Pentagon today to reaffirm the strong defense and security ties between the United States and the FSM.

The two officials welcomed the recent successful effort by President Biden and Congress to advance the Compacts of Free Association Amendments Act of 2024, which provides funding for the 20-year extension of economic assistance to the Freely Associated States (FAS) under the Compacts of Free Association (COFA). Additionally, they expressed gratitude for the decades of distinguished service by FSM citizens in the U.S. military made possible under the Compacts.

The two officials also underscored the importance of ongoing discussions between both countries to explore opportunities for new cooperation on U.S. defense posture in the FSM, including in the State of Yap, as well as exercise opportunities in the region.

Secretary Austin's meeting with President Simina comes as the United States continues to strengthen partnerships across the Pacific Islands region, including with the FAS. In August 2021, Secretary Austin met with the President of the Republic of Palau, and he met in September 2022 with the President of the Republic of the Marshall Islands.