WASHINGTON — Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg will travel to the Netherlands this week to lead a presidential delegation to the Invictus Games, an international sporting competition for wounded veterans, U.S. officials tell NBC News.
Buttigieg and his husband, Chasten Buttigieg, will be at The Hague for the event, which Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle are also attending. The secretary will be in attendance for the opening ceremony and speak at a welcome event for the U.S. team.
This is the second international trip on behalf of the Biden administration by Buttigieg, who has sought to burnish his foreign policy credentials as he considers whether to run for president again in the coming years. In November, Buttigieg traveled to Glasgow, Scotland, for the COP26 U.N. climate summit.
Prince Harry founded the Invictus Games, first held in 2014, to support and help rehabilitate military service members who are injured, wounded or struggling with illness. Before his 2020 presidential bid, Buttigieg was deployed to Afghanistan as a Naval Reserve officer while he was serving as mayor of South Bend, Indiana.
The Invictus Games take place every two years, but the 2020 games were postponed due to Covid-19.
Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., and Deputy Veterans Affairs Secretary Donald Remy will also join the U.S. delegation to the games, along with Air Force Under Secretary Gina Ortiz Jones and Rory Brosius, who runs the White House’s Joining Forces program to support military families.
Duckworth, who served as a captain in the Army National Guard, lost both of her legs and partial use of her right arm when her helicopter was shot down over Iraq in 2004.
Buttigieg is expected to return to the U.S. after the opening of the games on Saturday. He will make one transportation-related stop while in the Netherlands: Officials said he will visit the Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest seaport, on the North Sea.