WASHINGTON, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will start on Saturday a week-long visit to the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan, Pentagon spokesman George Little announced Thursday.
During his stay in the ROK, Hagel will celebrate the 60th anniversary of the U.S.-ROK alliance and participate in the 45th Security Consultative Meeting, Little said.
Hagel will also preside over the change of command ceremony of the U.S. Forces Korea, during which Curtis Scaparrotti will replace the outgoing commander James Thurman.
The Pentagon chief will visit U.S. and ROK troops "to thank them for their service and for maintaining a high degree of readiness and cooperation," Little added.
On Oct. 2, Hagel will travel to Tokyo, Japan to join Secretary of State John Kerry for the U.S.-Japan Security Consultative Committee and meet with U.S. troops stationed in Japan. He will return to Washington on Oct. 4, Little said.