BUDAPEST   -  Hungary and the United States have signed a defense cooperation agreement, according to official sources here on Saturday.

“Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan have signed a defense cooperation agreement on the sidelines of the celebrations of NATO’s 70th anniversary in Washington,” the official website of the Hungarian government informed.

“The new defense agreement concluded with the United States is a ‘modernized version’ of the defense cooperation agreement signed twenty years ago,” Szijjarto was quoted as saying.

“Security conditions have changed significantly in recent decades,” Szijjarto underlined, adding that the new defense deal would contribute to guaranteeing Hungary’s security, and ensuring that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) remain “the world’s most successful and strongest military alliance in future.”

In a statement following the signing of the agreement, U.S. Ambassador to Hungary David B. Cornstein said: “This agreement will modernize our previous status of forces agreement to reflect new realities in defense.”

“We look forward to an even stronger security relationship with Hungary, and we hope the Hungarian Parliament will complete its approval of the agreement as soon as possible,” Cornstein added.

The signing of the defense agreement comes following a visit to Hungary by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in February, when he vowed to renew U.S. engagement with Hungary and strengthen its relations with the countries in central and eastern Europe, including Hungary.