14 Aug 2012

US commander visiting NZ

1:44 pm on 14 August 2012

The United States commander with responsibility for Afghanistan is visiting New Zealand.

General James Mattis will hold talks with Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman and officials.

At a service on Saturday for two soldiers killed in Afghanistan, Dr Coleman acknowledged the help of the United States in bringing their bodies home.

And he said while New Zealand's contribution in Afghanistan was small, it was recognised around the world.

US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta was among those who offered condolences to New Zealand after the deaths of the two soldiers.

General Mattis is due to leave New Zealand on Monday.