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U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is in South Korea where he visited the demilitarized zone at the border with North Korea. Accompanied by his South Korean counterpart, he met with soldiers assigned there. SOUNDBITE: (English) U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel: "This is obviously a critical area that assures with our joint vigilance for the security and safety in South Korea and peace in this region." He also met with South Korean President Park Geun-hye in Seoul. The four day trip is part of an annual meeting between the two countries. This is the defense secretary's first trip to South Korea since taking office and his third trip to the Asia this year.