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Top NATO commander cuts short U.S. visit, eyes on Russian troops

By Phil Stewart WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has sent America's top general in Europe back early from a trip to Washington in what a spokesman on Sunday called a prudent step given Russia's "lack of transparency" about troop movements across the border with Ukraine.

Hagel to visit Japan in April for talks on defense guidelines

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel will visit Japan in early April for talks on such issues as work to review bilateral defense cooperation guidelines, a Defense Department spokesman said Thursday. After arriving in Japan on April 5, Hagel will meet with Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera on April 6 before leaving Japan for China the following day, officials familiar with Japan-U.S. relations said.

Hagel due in China, Japan, skipping Korea

By Lee Chi-dong WASHINGTON, March 27 (Yonhap) -- Chuck Hagel will make his first trip to China as Pentagon chief early next month as part of a regional tour without a stop in South Korea, his department announced Thursday. The secretary's visit to Asia, the fourth in less than a year, will follow a group meeting with his Southeast Asian counterparts in Hawaii April 1-3. He will first travel to Tokyo and then head to Beijing.

US defense chief heads to China, Japan next week

Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel will travel to China and Japan next week after hosting a meeting of Asian defense ministers in Hawaii, amid tensions between Beijing and Tokyo over a disputed island chain. The US military has sought improved relations with its Chinese counterpart, arguing that stronger links will help avoid dangerous misunderstandings. Beijing has made broad territorial claims in the South China Sea and East China Sea that are not recognized by Washington and its regional allies, including Japan.

US defense chief heads to China, Japan next week

Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel will travel to China and Japan next week after hosting a meeting of Asian defense ministers in Hawaii, amid tensions between Beijing and Tokyo over a disputed island chain. The US military has sought improved relations with its Chinese counterpart, arguing that stronger links will help avoid dangerous misunderstandings. Beijing has made broad territorial claims in the South China Sea and East China Sea that are not recognized by Washington and its regional allies, including Japan.

China to strengthen Internet security after U.S. spying report

BEIJING (Reuters) - China will beef up its internet security after recent reports that the U.S. government spied on a major telecommunications firm, the Defence Ministry said on Thursday. Reports that the U.S. National Security Agency infiltrated servers at the headquarters of Huawei Technologies Co. "lay bare the United States's hypocrisy and despotic rule," ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng told a briefing.

U.S. Defense Secretary Hagel to make 4-day visit to China in April

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will visit China from April 7 to 10 to discuss bilateral and regional security issues, a Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman said Thursday. The announcement by Geng Yansheng, who did not provide other details, was made at a time when China and Japan, a long-standing security ally of the United States, are still struggling to repair bilateral ties seriously frayed over territorial and historical issues, raising fears that an unintended confrontation could escalate into a bigger military clash.

Russia building up troops on Ukraine border

Russia has moved more troops closer to Ukraine's borders in recent days despite assurances it will not invade, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Wednesday. Although Russia's defense minister Sergei Shoigu had told Hagel last week that Moscow would not send troops into eastern Ukraine, "the reality is that they continue to build up their forces," Hagel said. "So they need to make sure they stay committed to what Minister Shoigu told me," the Pentagon chief said at a joint news conference after meeting his British counterpart, Philip Hammond.

Russia building up troop levels on Ukraine border

Russia has added troops on Ukraine's border in recent days despite assurances it would not attack the country's east, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Wednesday. Although Russia's defense minister had told Hagel last week that Moscow would not send troops into eastern Ukraine, "the reality is that they continue to build up their forces, so they need to make sure they stay committed to what Minister (Sergei) Shoigu told me," the Pentagon chief told reporters after meeting his British counterpart. ddl-mra/sst

Americas News Agenda for March 26

Duty Editor: Jim Mannion Tel: +1 202 414 0541 What's happening in the Americas on Wednesday: + More than 150 unaccounted for in US landslide ARLINGTON, Washington: Following developments as emergency teams battle tough conditions to try and find victims and survivors of a huge and deadly landslide in the US state of Washington, where more than 150 people are still unaccounted for. Picture. Video. (US-LANDSLIDE) -- OTHER AGENDA ITEMS --
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