US defense chief plans to meet with Chinese counterpart in Singapore, US official says

Defense Sec. Lloyd Austin and the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Charles Brown, Jr. testify on Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is expected to meet with China's defense minister during a conference in Singapore later this month, a U.S. official said on Thursday.

The meeting will be the first substantial in-person engagement between U.S. and Chinese defense chiefs in two years, though Austin and Chinese defense minister Dong Jun spoke by phone last month.

The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said while a meeting was planned, last minute changes could impact it.

(Reporting by Idrees Ali)