US Department of State Daily Briefing #15: Friday,1/25/91

Tutwiler Source: State Department Spokesman Margaret Tutwiler Description: 12:23 pm; Washington, DC Date: Jan 25, 19911/25/91 Category: Briefings Region: East Asia, E/C Europe, MidEast/North Africa, Europe, South America Country: Yugoslavia (former), Pakistan, Jordan, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Iraq, Japan, USSR (former), Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Tanzania, Turkey, Greece, Malaysia, Germany, Uganda Subject: POW/MIA Issues, Terrorism, Military Affairs, Travel, Democratization, State Department, Arms Control (ON THE RECORD UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED) MS. TUTWILER: I have several things that I'd like to make statements on, and then I'll be, obviously, happy to take all your questions.

[US Urges Peaceful Solution in Yugoslavia]

My first statement concerns Yugoslavia. The United States Government is deeply concerned about the potential use of military force in Yugoslavia. Both the Yugoslav military and the Croatian security forces are at a high state of alert, and there is a significant danger of violence. We take this danger very seriously. The United States urges that current differences in Yugoslavia be settled peacefully. We have communicated our views to the Yugoslav government at high levels on several occasions. We will continue to urge Yugoslav leaders to proceed with the dialogue they have engaged in on the future structure and composition of Yugoslavia. For our overall policy on Yugoslavia, we clearly defined this in a very lengthy public statement on October 19, and that remains valid today.

[Pakistan: Visit of Benazir Bhutto]

My second concerns the visit to the Department this afternoon of Mrs. Benazir Bhutto. As you know, the former Prime Minister of Pakistan will be meeting in the Department of State this afternoon with Ambassador Kelly, the Assistant Secretary of State for Near East and South Asian Affairs, and Ambassador Schifter, the Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs. Mrs. Bhutto is here on a private visit. She is the leader of the opposition in the Pakistan Parliament. The United States Government has been concerned by the statements emanating from politicians in Pakistan who belong to Mrs. Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party, and Mr. Kelly will be underlining those concerns. Assistant Secretary Kelly will be pointing out that after five and one-half months of diplomacy, the allied coalition has taken action pursuant to United Nations Security Council Resolution 678 to achieve the liberation of Kuwait. As we have previously stated, we believe that any pause in coalition military efforts would allow Saddam Hussein time to reorganize his defenses and would be costly in terms of the human lives of coalition forces. The Department notes that the Government of Pakistan has contributed nearly 11,000 troops to the coalition effort aimed at the liberation of Kuwait. On terrorism -- Q Margaret, on that one -- A Yes. Q What is it precisely about those statements from the Pakistani People's Party that concern you? A I don't have all the specifics, Jim. As you know, many people of the Party have been calling for a pause. As you know, our policy is not to support such a recommendation, and we have stated very clearly why we do not support such a thing, and that's the most obvious one that I can point to. I don't have a compilation or did not bring with me statements by various members of that Party. But that's the main thrust as they have been enunciating it. Q Has she asked to see Baker? A No. She did not. Q And I don't recall ever hearing you say before that the reason the U.S. does not favor a pause is because it allows Saddam Hussein to reorganize his forces. Normally, your posture on that has been you don't want a pause, because we've already given him a pause. A Right. Q This is a new wrinkle? A Not a new wrinkle. It's just another sub-chapter of our main reason, which is that we gave him a 45-day pause for peace. Obviously, many people believe, should such another pause take place, it would just afford him an opportunity to dig in deeper and to rebuilt and to retrench. Q Margaret, does the United States think that the statements by these Pakistani opposition party members are influential enough to actually cause Pakistan perhaps, and maybe other countries, to rethink that question of the pause? A No. Q You seem to be taking it quite weightily -- more weightily than I've seen elsewhere. A Not necessarily. No. Q Margaret, the United States froze economic and military aid to Pakistan last fall because of developments in their nuclear program. Have you received any assurances from the Pakistani government since then that put some of those concerns to rest? A I'm not aware that that situation has changed, Alan, but it's, to be honest with you, not something I looked into this morning. But I'm unaware of any change in the status. Q Are you satisfied with comments from -- you talked about the Pakistani opposition party. The Pakistani government also made some rather ambivalent statements, and the Pakistani Prime Minister is on some kind of a peace mission as we speak. A I haven't seen any ambivalent Pakistani statements by the government, and I would point you to -- they have 11,000 Pakistani soldiers in the Gulf in this effort. Q Margaret, could you tell us -- you said that some of the members of the opposition parties have made statements. Does that include Ms. Bhutto herself? A I'm just going to leave it at "members of that Party have." She has been here speaking, as you know, on the record throughout the week, and I just refer you to her record to see her views and opinions concerning this situation.

[Terrorism Update]

My statement on terrorism: Several incidents over the last 24 hours occurred at private or commercial facilities associated with the United States or coalition member countries. There were no attacks on U.S. diplomatic or military facilities, and there were no injuries reported. In Kampala, Uganda, a bomb was thrown over the wall of the American Recreational Club and landed on the tennis court. The device exploded on impact. There were no injuries. Our Ambassador had used the court shortly before the bomb exploded. In Athens, Greece, there were small explosions at a branch of Citibank at the home of the French military attache and Barclay's Bank. All damage was minor and no casualties have been reported. A fourth bomb was found at a Citibank branch in northern Athens and deactivated. In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, authorities have discovered and disarmed a small explosive device containing shrapnel outside the American Airlines office. In Ankara, Turkey, authorities discovered an explosive device which had failed to detonate at a Citibank branch. In addition, the Department yesterday issued a travel advisory, warning Americans to defer non-essential travel to Tanzania in view of uncertain conditions and a credible Iraqi-sponsored terrorist threat against official Americans there. Because of this threat and the uncertain conditions, we have ordered the departure of all dependents and non-essential personnel from the Embassy. Yesterday, as many of you may know, Germany announced that it was expelling 28 Iraqi diplomats. The U.S. Embassy in Seoul, Korea, is advising Americans that, due to the potential for terrorist acts, they should avoid areas where Americans tend to gather after business hours. Q Margaret, is there any way to compare this number of terrorist incidents with what happens on a normal day around the world? A We have been characterizing it all week, John, as "not a major increase," but we have been pointing out that these incidents are going on. And many of the incidents that I'm not bothering to mention are continuing and we view them as just routine -- what goes on around the world in various countries. Q So these would be -- the ones that you've mentioned the briefing would be non-routine. They would be extraordinary. A No. I would not characterize them as extraordinary. I have said that there have been -- every day I've said, which includes today -- there have been no major incidents. They characterize "major" here as "substantial damage," as "casualties." There has been none of that, but we are and will continue to point out incidents which are more than just the routine. For instance, many Embassies get phone calls every day -- a bomb threat. Many Embassies get any number of things. That we are not reporting, because that goes on day in and day out. Q Are any of these traceable in any way, shape or form to Iraq -- any of the incidents which you have described here today? A The Tanzania incident I just definitely told you was because of Iraqi terrorists. And the only other one of these that I can specifically say was the one we mentioned yesterday, which was Manila. Q So on Tanzania you do have what you regard as a credible specific threat to the Embassy there. A Yes. I said a "credible Iraqi-sponsored terrorist threat against official Americans there." Q Thank you very much. A No problem. Q Before the August 2 event, did the State Department ever have evidence or comparable evidence of Iraqi terrorist threats? A I haven't asked since before August 2. Q Could you? A I'll be happy to. Q I wonder if there's any pickup -- if Iraq is the same old Iraq that you used to deal with until August? A Iraq has been very vocal in saying -- and we've said every day, as you know, that they are going to send terrorists around the world -- they are going to use terrorism. Well, that has all been since August 2. Q But people don't think they had a great character change August 2. They think there was a lot of evidence before August 2 that Iraq was involved in terrorism. So I wondered if you could compare, if possible, whether Iraq has -- A I don't see what the point would. Q You don't see the point? A I don't see the point of comparing what they did for the last ten years -- Q Well, I was wondering whether they're stepping up their terrorism -- whether they've been stepping up their anti-American terrorism now that you're at war with them, and whether they were just as active against the United States when the United States was not at war with them. A I think it's fairly obvious by the statements from this Government and other governments and the actions that have been taken by any number of governments that they clearly have stepped up their terrorist intentions. Why in the world would all these countries be expelling Iraqi diplomats. Why would these people be going to the great lengths that they are going to -- Q I can give you lots of answers, if you'd like. A -- our FAA, etc. It's because the whole world -- we've made four public statements here on terrorism. I think the whole world is looking at it more, Barry. Q Well, one answer might be, because there's finally a consensus -- A That what? Q That there's finally a consensus in the civilized world that Iraq is terrorist prone, and some people have questioned whether the United States was late coming to this conclusion. Therefore, it's to make your report credible, if it sounds like there's a new spurt of Iraqi terrorism. It would be nice to know if there was about the same sort of Iraqi terrorism before August. A There's no problem with our reporting being credible. There is no problem with the world knowing, because Saddam Hussein himself has said it any number of times since August 2 that he is going to use terrorism throughout the world. And that is not something that is new to the world, and why else would everybody be reacting the way that they are reacting if we did not, as responsible nations, take this very seriously. Q Margaret -- A I have one other statement, unless you're still on this subject. Q Still on the same point. Are those acts of terrorism traceable to Iraq to be included as war crimes? A I don't know if you marry the two. War crimes, it is my understanding -- I'll be happy to have the lawyers look into this for you -- concern actual activity in the hostility in the Gulf. I'm not sure that war crimes are linked to terrorist activity -- if you blow up a bomb in X country, is that supposed to be a war crime. Q Margaret, does the Government believe that the Ambassador in Uganda was a target? A I haven't heard that, Mark, and, if he was, I doubt that I'd be able to say so. Q Do you know, Margaret, whether the Tanzanian government has either expelled any Iraqi diplomats or arrested any Iraqis? A As of this morning, I'm not aware of them taking such an action, and I'll be happy to see if something goes on this afternoon for you. Q Forgive me, but going back to Mark's question, why would you be unable to say that the Ambassador in Uganda was a target when you've just said that the Embassy in Tanzania is a target? A He asked for a specific individual. I'm unaware that as a Department we go out and talk about specific threats to specific individuals. Q Excuse me, Margaret, but you said that he had used the recreational center just prior to -- A I just made the point that he had been on the tennis courts earlier that day. I did not say that he was a target. I'm pointing out that this bomb went off on these tennis courts. The Ambassador had been there earlier in the day. I don't know if the two are related or not. Q Margaret, can you tell us the status of former Ambassador al-Mashat's son here in the United States? A No. Because I don't know. I'll be happy to look into it for you. Q He apparently left his son behind to continue his education here. A I've heard that, Alan. It's not something that I've looked into. I'll be happy to look into it for you. Q On the same subject, Margaret, do you know anything about al-Mashat seeking asylum in another Western country? A I haven't heard about that. I have one more announcement that I'd like to make.

[USSR Foreign Minister to Meet with President and Secretary]

As you know, yesterday we announced the Secretary of State will be meeting here at the Department tomorrow with the Soviet Foreign Minister. That meeting will be at 1:30 p.m. They will discuss the situation in the Baltics, arms control, the Gulf and the summit. They will be meeting one-on-one with notetakers only present, and I do not have a specific press plan for you. It will be handled as the vast majority of all meetings were handled with the former Foreign Minister, Mr. Shevardnadze. The gentlemen will decide while they are meeting if they wish to make statements to you at the conclusion of the meeting. Yes, we will have the press stakeout here, which is the norm here, in the lobby. But I cannot make a commitment that they both will come down and talk to you. Q You generally estimate the meetings are two or three hours? Is that a good guess? A I would envision this one would probably be like the rest have been, which, as John points out, go anywhere from, you know, 90 minutes -- Q Two to ten. A -- to three, four hours. I don't know. Q I know you just said they would decide whether the two men would make statements afterwards, but can you make any comment about whether Secretary Baker will make comments, regardless of whether the Soviet Foreign Minister decides to do so? A No. The Secretary of State, as is the custom here, will escort the Foreign Minister in the building and will escort the Foreign Minister out. There will be the normal photo opportunity for the press of the two gentlemen in Secretary Baker's office. But I have nothing that I can tell you definitively on how they will choose to handle answering press questions at the conclusion of their meeting. Q And can you tell us anything else about Baker's schedule tomorrow? Will he be meeting with anyone else tomorrow, or is that the focus of his day tomorrow? A Tomorrow is a Saturday, and yes, this is what he will be doing on Saturday afternoon. I'm unaware of any other meetings that he has scheduled. Q Margaret, on the larger question of U.S.-Soviet relations, given some of the harder line statements that have been made from the Secretary's office and others in the State Department today -- or recently -- and given what has happened in the Baltics, does the United States feel that the Cold War, which I think we officially declared over, has restarted? A John, I wouldn't characterize that or make that type of policy statement for you. As you point out, we have been stating over the last two weeks our deep concern for the situation in the Baltics, and that remains the situation today. And that is the first thing that the Secretary of State will be discussing with the Foreign Minister tomorrow in their meeting. Q Margaret, does the State Department have any comment on -- I think it was in Pravda. In a prominent Soviet publication there was criticism of the United States and its allies going beyond the goals of the U.N. Security Council resolutions and appearing to try to strike Iraq and strike the leadership of Iraq. A Appearing to strike? Q Well, I'm paraphrasing. I don't remember exactly what the thing said, but it criticized the United States for going beyond the U.N. Security Council resolutions. Do you have any comment on that? A I haven't seen it, and I don't have a comment. Q Margaret, Gorbachev's statement was very much like that -- Q In announcing the -- A I'll come there, Jim. I'm sorry -- what? Q I say Gorbachev said something very much like that on the record on Tuesday, I think it was. A That we've gone beyond the U.N. resolution? Q That the United States was in danger of going beyond the requirements of the U.N. resolution, warning against carrying the war to Iraq. It said it was only to liberate Kuwait and complained about the possibility of excess civilian casualties. A I haven't seen that statement either, and you're saying that he characterized it as "is in danger" and not "has." And I, obviously, would tell you that the United States and the alliance are abiding with the 12 United Nations resolutions, and our objectives are, as they always have been, laid out in those 12 resolutions. Jim? Q In announcing the Bessmertnykh visit yesterday, the State Department said that a report that Bessmertnykh would meet with President Bush was erroneous. A There was a -- Q As you know, the White House announced that he will in fact meet the President. A Our statement said that the report that the President would meet this weekend -- the report that we had read said that he would be seeing the Foreign Minister on Saturday. Our statement said that report was misinformation, was erroneous. As you now know, this was just set this morning. The President is seeing him on Monday. When this first report surfaced, we knew that no such meeting was scheduled, and we wanted to get out that that was not correct information. What was correct -- and we then did announce it -- was that the Secretary had made arrangements to see the Foreign Minister on Saturday. At the time we put out our report, to be perfectly honest, we didn't even have a time yet. But because of the unbelievable onslaught of press calls -- not only here but at the White House -- we felt pushed to go ahead and say we're working on trying to get a meeting between the two Foreign Ministers, but the President this weekend has no plans to meet with him. Q The point of my question is, was it always anticipated that there would be a meeting between the President and the Soviet Foreign Minister? A My understanding, Jim, is that this was worked out this morning. I can tell you that the times that the Secretary of State was going to meet with the Foreign Minister were not worked out until very late last night. In fact, they changed three times yesterday afternoon due to -- which I won't bore you with -- a number of different scheduling problems. Q Do you mean until this morning there was no notion that the President would meet with the Foreign Minister of the Soviet Union? A If you want to go through a scheduling debate -- Q I don't want to go through a debate. A -- I can tell you any number of days -- Q I think you're misleading us. I think that it was all along anticipated that the President would meet with the Foreign Minister. When you put out that announcement yesterday, you weren't focusing on the fact that he arrives over the weekend, and that he'll see the President. You wanted to concentrate on its not being so that he'd see him over the weekend -- A That's right. Q -- which turns out to be true. A Correct. Q Yes. But the main point is the Foreign Minister was coming here to see the President, and you're today acting as if that this morning the bright idea occurred to have the Foreign Minister see the President -- A Then you know something -- Q And that was the arrangement all along. The hour was just set this morning. A You know something then, Barry, that I don't know, and I did not know, nor did the Secretary of State, who spoke on the phone yesterday with the Foreign Minister that -- Q That the President would see the Foreign Minister. You didn't know that until today. A -- that this was 100 percent locked in and done. The Secretary of State will also probably be seeing the Foreign Minister again on Monday himself in a separate meeting. Q I wouldn't be surprised. A You might be surprised to know that the President was considering a Tuesday meeting. If you want to go through all the scheduling, we'll be glad to go through the scheduling. It was not misleading. We felt it important, because of a news press from you all and the press at the White House to clear up that the President of the United States was not seeing the Soviet Foreign Minister on Saturday or Sunday. Q This comes under the heading of "no decision is ever final until it happens," right? A That's right. Q The way the White House handled this is to say, "We'll check into this." They didn't try to -- A The way the White House handled it was to have Marlin to call me -- Q -- discredit press reports. A -- and say, "Would you please put this out, and in the same statement put out that the President is not meeting with the Foreign Minister this weekend," which is what I did. Q Is there a possibility that Secretary Baker will continue his meetings with the Foreign Minister on Sunday? A Anything is possible. His plans are that they may or probably will meet again on Monday. But it is not set, and he and the Foreign Minister will determine that when they meet. Q Margaret, you said they would be discussing not only the Baltics but also arms control. A Right. Q Can you tell us whether the meetings with the arms control -- I would call it a "working group," but let's not stick to that technical phrase if that somehow causes a problem in your answering. Will the Obukhov discussions continue into the weekend or perhaps concurrent with the Bessmertnykh talks? A Reggie [Bartholomew] is meeting again today, as he has every day for the last four days, with his Soviet counterpart. I don't have a further characterization for you, other than, obviously, work remains. The Secretary and the Foreign Minister, as I stated, will deal with this subject tomorrow, and that is one of the subjects that will probably cause them to meet again on Monday. It is undetermined yet if the experts will join them tomorrow in any portion of their meeting. They usually decide that as they see how they address the subject. But they will be in the building and available to be called in by the Foreign Ministers. Q Also if I could, please, you also said they would discuss the summit. Just to help us set a benchmark before the discussions begin, I think the last time the Secretary of State himself addressed this subject, the summit was still scheduled for February 11 through 13. The White House on background, I believe, has said that it's "up in the air." Is the summit scheduled for February 11 through 13 as of this moment prior to the talks between Baker and Bessmertnykh? A I have nothing new to add to what the White House has said in the past. Q Or to what the Secretary has said in the past. A Correct. Q Margaret, I would like to make a comment on what Barry said. I think some of us are having a little bit of difficulty with the wording of some of your statements. It sprung to mind that when we were on the trip a couple of weeks ago that you told us that Secretary Baker would not meet the troops in the desert. And then a few days later he met the troops in an aircraft hangar in the desert. I think that maybe we're being dense, but if we have to read statements with that degree of Talmudic exactitude, maybe you ought to take a look at the wording of them as well. A As you know -- and we went through this because you were on the trip -- the Secretary is a very literal person and is very, very sincere in never misleading. And we explained all this to you on the airplane. He had just been in a Cabinet meeting, as you know, where the President and he had encouraged the Congress and others -- because of reports that were coming in from General Schwarzkopf -- to please stop all visits, because the men were in a different mode -- "in an operational mode," I believe is how we described it. At the same time, you know, we had a request in from the same area, the same individual -- military person -- weeks before that meeting for the Secretary in a city, Alan, which is quite different -- as you know, because I believe you were on both trips -- than arranging helicopters, then flying an hour and 15 minutes out into the middle of a desert, having troops stop what they're doing and assemble -- that is quite a different thing than at an airport, which is where we were, driving across a Tarmac and seeing troops. And he knew when he spoke to you all -- and I had told him -- Q (Inaudible) A -- wait one second -- that this question was going to come at him, because you had already asked me. He knew exactly what he was saying, because he did not break the President's own rules and the President's own guidelines and his own by making a separate movement event way out into the desert to see these troops. And that is why he said that, and that is why we came back and told you that. I also mentioned while we were on that airplane that General Graves was going to go back through the military command to say, "We have this request. Is this something that you want the Secretary of State to honor?" The message came back from General Schwarzkopf to General Graves for the Secretary, "Yes. We would like you to drive across the Tarmac and see the people that you saw earlier." And that is exactly what we did. Q I take all those -- Q While we appreciate the lengthy explanation on the record that you've just given us on that subject, the thrust, I think, of Alan's question was not for an explanation of the "in the desert portion" of the statement. The thrust was for a look again at the manner in which some of these statements are issued. If there are technicalities such as that on which the Administration wishes to rely, obviously, it can choose to do so. But it's something that makes it difficult for people to determine what the Administration really means when it says something like that. That's all we're just asking. A That's what he said. He didn't go to the desert. Q Margaret, can I just ask one more question about this? Not to beat a dead horse, but I'm still at the end of all this a little bit confused. Was the original intention of the Bessmertnykh visit here to see the President? A To see the President? Q Yes. A Almost ten days ago I told you all that the Secretary of State was on the phone with the Foreign Minister of the Soviet Union. In that phone conversation they discussed three things, as I remember telling you. One, it was a congratulatory phone call. Two was to thank them for the Soviet Ambassador at the United Nations -- for the work that he was currently doing up there -- and I cannot remember the specific issue. And, three, both gentlemen agreed -- the new Foreign Minister said, "I have to come back to Washington, D.C., to pack up, etc., to say goodbye to the Embassy staff. I think, Jim, that we should get together." That is how this all started. Baker said, "I agree," and they have had their second conversation yesterday. To my knowledge in that conversation they did not discuss a Presidential meeting. I was in the room and only heard one-half of the conversation, but I never heard it come up. Q Margaret, could we switch -- A Staffs have been working the other part, Mary. Q Can we (inaudible) to the Middle East. Do you have -- I know this just happened. Do you have any reaction to the latest raid against Israel, and are you still pressuring Israel not to retaliate?

[New Iraqi Missile Attack on Israel]

A Once again, we have witnessed this morning an unprovoked Iraqi missile attack against Israel. It demonstrates once again that we are dealing with a regime prepared to use all means of terror against innocence in pursuit of its goals. This serves as yet one more reminder of Saddam Hussein's brutality and his determination to attack innocent people. We condemn this brutal act. The Secretary of State again expresses his sorrow over these unprovoked attacks, and his deep appreciation for Israeli restraint again today. We are adding more Patriot units to defend against these attacks. These Patriot units will be coming out of Europe, and they will have American crews. As you all know, the United States is making every effort to destroy these Scuds. Q A follow-up. How upset will you be if Israel chooses to retaliate now? Will that affect Israel's aid requests? A What aid request are you speaking of? Q Of the new one. A There isn't a new one. And you might be interested to know that yesterday the Finance Minister of Israel called the Secretary of State and said that he has not, as has been reported in his own government, made a formal request to this Government of $13 billion. Q The key word -- "a formal request," right? Is that correct? Q Some of us have been in town a long time and we know the difference between "formal" and "informal request." A He didn't ask the Secretary of State for $13 billion. Q Nobody here has written or reported, as far as we know, that Israel has made a formal request. All of us know that Israel, informally, has suggested it could use about $13 billion. A That is correct. Q It throws everybody -- I know it's not your intention but it sort of throws everybody off -- most of us won't go anyhow no matter how hard you throw -- to make it seem that Israel isn't asking for more money. It is. It's not formal yet. That's all. A I only can refer you to the Finance Minister's statements in his country after his meeting with our Deputy Secretary of State. Q We'll go back to an old system. A Second of all, I can only say what he said to the Secretary of State yesterday. That is as good as my information is. Q So then that means, I think, that we've got to ask the generic question again: Have there been any contacts with the Iraqis? A No. Q OK. And is Eagleburger back? A As you know, I believe we posted it last night, Larry Eagleburger is enroute back, and he returns to this country sometime late this afternoon. Q "This country." Will he be coming to report to the President -- A To Washington, D.C. Q -- to the Secretary? A There are no scheduled meetings that I'm aware of. Throughout this entire trip, I've reported to you everyday that he has been in very, very close contact with the Secretary of State. So I'm not sure if he has any new information to report while he's been in an airplane. Q Do you have anything more to say about the Kuwaiti contribution announced this morning, with specific reference as to whether all of it will be for the military effort? Will some of it be used for the Frontline States, etc.? A No. I do not have a breakdown for you of the $13.5 billion and how it will be spent. Q The last time they provided money to the U.S., as I recall, almost all of it was in cash which was simply transferred over to an American account. Is that the intention this time, or are they going to do in some other way that -- I don't know what -- A I don't know specifically, John, how they're going to do it. I'll ask for you. Q Have you heard from the -- Q What about the other responsibility-sharing, Margaret? Have you heard from the others? Are there plans for the others to get together with the Secretary and perhaps make similar announcements? Q The UAE and Saudi Arabia? A So that we're very literal here, I can't answer your question, if we're going to play this word game now, of -- I don't know , Bill, if -- Q Well, be creative. A -- if he pops up on Monday and has a meeting with someone, are you going to hold me to a standard and say "I mislead you?" So how do you want me to answer the question? Q Will the money be -- A We reserve the right to schedule one if we would like. There is literally, as of six minutes of 1 p.m., not one scheduled. Q Have you heard from the UAE and Saudi Arabia in regard to their burden-sharing? A I'm not positive whether the Secretary has had responses yet from those two governments. Q Is there still a 50/50 arrangement? There was year. By that, I mean, about half goes to the war effort and about a half goes to assist Turkey and others hurt by the embargo, etc.? A I'm not sure, Barry. My instincts are, my impressions are that this is for Operation Desert Storm. But let me check with the experts who have worked on this every single, solid day and see if any of this money is earmarked for Frontline States. Q Does Israel qualify -- there never was a scientific delineation anyhow -- but is Israel now considered a Frontline State, having, I suppose, met some of the informal qualifications of being under attack and have enormous, extra cost to defend itself? A I'm not aware of Israel making any request to any countries. I'm not aware of Israel being characterized by anyone as a Frontline State. Q I didn't mean a "request." I meant a "judgment" by the Administration -- request or not? We're just groping here. But I'm asking you if the United States has come to consider Israel in the category of a Frontline State that could use some assistance from these wealthy contributors? A Not that I am personally aware of. Israel, as you know -- I've just announced to you another Patriot delivery. I've announced to another American crew coming right out of Europe. As you know, and the Secretary of State has said, we have 470,000-plus troops there. We have been helping, as you know, as much as we can. I'm not aware of any financial discussions that are going on. Q There's no inconsistency -- there's no consistency -- squadrons have been sent to Turkey, troops are there. You can troops in an area and also assist a country economically. The question is still on the table. If there is an answer, I'd appreciate it. A We do help Israel, as you know, every year economically. Q The thrust of Barry's question is that there are Frontline States which, I believe, are defined as Turkey, Jordan, and Egypt, which the United States has asked other countries to contribute to. The question is whether the United States will ask these other countries like Germany and Japan to contribute to Israel, too, since it is a Frontline State in the sense that it's facing attack? A I'm not aware of the United States preparing to do such a thing. I'm unaware that such a thing has been done. Q Why not? A And when you only list four Frontline States -- as you know, there are any number of other Frontline States that were addressed by various organizations -- the EC, for one -- in helping other countries during the first five and a half months of this. Q What you're saying is that Israel is a special responsibility of the United States. Israel gets assistance from the United States and there's no reason for the United States to ask other countries to share that burden? A What I just said was, I believe -- and I will stand to be corrected -- that the responsibility-sharing that the United States has sought for 1991, Alan, goes towards paying for Desert Storm. I am unaware if portions of that money or part of that money have been requested for Frontline States as they were in 1990. I believe they are not. Q Margaret, yesterday, the Israeli Ambassador said that he felt that Israel should receive reparations from Iraq once this war is over for the damage, not only physical but to its economy. Does the United States support that? A I'll have to take a look at it. It's something I'm not aware of. Q Has Baker been on the phone today to Israel, to any official? A To Israel? Q Yes. A Not that I know of before I came to the briefing. Q Yesterday, you were asked if you could provide the breakdown of the money that had been given for 1990, especially that of Japan, and whether or not -- where the $4 billion had gone. We haven't heard anything yet. Are you still going to come up with that? A The experts are working on that for you. I spoke to the specialists this morning. Q Margaret, you said a minute ago you didn't think that, as of this point, any of the 1991 requests for responsibility-sharing were related in any way to Frontline Assistance or, for instance, to Eastern European states or any of that. So far as you know, at this point, all requests are related to the military costs of Operation Desert Storm; is that correct? A Right. So once again, to be sure that we're totally literal, I have said twice that I do not know. I have said twice that I believe. I've said twice that I will check. Q When you check, could you -- I'd like to just broaden Alan's question. He asked about Germany and Japan. If the United States has made requests of any countries, for example, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Germany, Japan, but perhaps others -- if it has made requests of any other countries for Frontline States-type assistance, economic assistance, to overcome the burdens of this crisis. Has the United States requested assistance from those countries for Israel? And, especially, has the United States requested any such assistance from any Arab nations for Israel? Have they discussed it? Let's not stick with the phrase "request," OK? A I just answered this for Alan. Q No, no, his question was -- A I said I'm not aware of it. Q When we go back and look at the transcript, it will say Germany and Japan. The key thing is -- A You want to know if the United States of America has asked any nation on the face of the earth if they are going to contribute to Israel as a Frontline State? Q And the significance of the question is whether the U.S. has asked Saudi Arabia or Kuwait or the United Arab Emirates to contribute money which might end up in Israel? A I understand the question. Q OK. It's not just any country on the face of the earth. There's a political implication to the question. A Well, you said it wasn't just Germany and Japan. Q That's right. Q Maragret, do you have any comment on the reports today in one of the two dailies in Washington that the Soviet Union is still giving types, or different types of help to the Iraqis? A I can only refer you to what the Soviet Defense Ministry and the Soviet Foreign Ministry have said. They have said that all Soviet advisors are not in Iraq. And yesterday their Foreign Ministry said they have, I believe, 41 diplomats that are left in Iraq. Q And, indeed, you can answer that, can't you? Q It's not only a matter of advisors. A What? Q The State Department's policy is that, indeed, they take those affirmations as credible; correct? The State Department has said repeatedly that there is no evidence that the Soviets are providing military advice to the Iraqis. Isn't that still true? A That is still true. But I don't want to hear -- I'm saying what the Foreign Ministry said. After all, I cannot stand up here and be held accountable if the Soviet Union tomorrow says, "Two of these 41 individuals are military advisors." You will then say that I misled you. I'm not. I'm only going to tell you what the Foreign Ministry has said. That's all of our information. The Defense Ministry was out there yesterday saying it and their Foreign Ministry. We don't have anything to confirm it or to deny it or a way of verifying it. Q Margaret, in the last 24 hours, there have been British officials and Pentagon officials, who spoke only on condition of anonymity, who have said that, indeed, there are at least 100 Soviet advisors there. Has the State Department not gotten the same information from U.S. intelligence sources? A The State Department does not have, to my knowledge, any independent information of what you're just saying. That is why we came out here yesterday and said, here's what the Soviet are saying. As you know, we do not have a way of gathering this information in Baghdad. We don't have an Embassy there. We don't have personnel. We don't have a way of verifying this. Q Apparently, other U.S. intelligence sources do have this information. Have you asked them to provide you with that? A I'm sure that we have, and I'm sure that I would be saying something quite different if the United States knew that the Soviet statements were not factually correct in our best opinion. I will be happy to re-ask the question "Do we have any independent information that there are a hundred advisors -- you say, the British are saying? -- that are still in Iraq? Q Do you have any comment on the reports that Saddam Hussein has executed his top two generals, the air force general and the air defense general? A No. Q You have no knowledge of it? A We've seen the reports and we have no way to confirm them or deny them. Q One more question on the Kuwaiti contribution, if I may. Does the Secretary of State agree with the Kuwaiti Ambassador's statement made at his side this morning that the $13.5 billion that they announced this morning is a "small and insignificant contribution?" My question is whether the United States would like to see more but the Kuwaitis gave this much and the Kuwaitis admit that this is only an insignificant contribution? A I think the Ambassador's point was a very valid point. The other part of his statement was, "After all, there are human lives here that are being given and what's money when you're talking about human lives." He also said that this was for three months. The Secretary of State also said that we view this as a very generous donation and that we are very appreciative of it. It is the amount that the United States asked for. Q You said that the U.S. might be asking, or the State Department might be trying to get more information on this report that the Soviet military advisors may be at work. Just for the record, report that is being talked about says that the support includes operating air defense batteries, providing intelligence, and servicing advanced MiG-29 jets. A Whose report is this? Q The Washington Times. A By unnamed officials or by British officials? I haven't seen this. Q Administration sources. A I'll re-look into it. Q Margaret, did the Secretary's request for the $13.5 billion come in the form of a percentage of the total amount that was being sought from all the countries involved? Can you give us that total? A I'll answer your broad question with a "yes." I will not answer your specifics. Q Have you been able to follow up on the senior Saudi official's comment that Saudi Arabia would be giving 40 to 50 percent? A There's no need to follow up on it. We've said, and I'll say again today, that was a comment that was made to a number of you all at an airport setting. We have said that we weren't exactly sure what was meant by that. I don't have any other way of explaining it for you. Q To clarify, Margaret, the $13.5 billion is a percentage of the total cost, and it was discussed as a percentage contribution of the total expected cost this year? Is that what you're saying? A No. He asked me, "Is this a percentage of the total?" I answered that in the affirmative. They were not asked a percentage. They were asked a number. The number is a percentage of the total. In the conversation, it may well have been said, "This, Mr. Ambassador, is X percent of the total cost." I don't know that for a fact. Q Of the total cost. It isn't that the U.S. has got in its mind some specific amount they would like -- A Well, of course, they did. Q -- some goal. The Kuwaitis were asked that amount which amounts, of course, to a percentage of a larger figure? A The United States is, obviously, not just at random picking numbers out of the sky. Q No, I know you wouldn't do that. A So the United States is asking for specific numbers based on what the United States believes the United States needs for this alliance. Q Why will the United States not level with the people of the United States and give them some idea of what the cost of this war is going to be if it has a total cost in mind? A The United States -- and this Administration -- will do that when the United States chooses to and in the form they choose and the manner they choose. That is not what I have authority to be down here doing for you all. Q The Japanese Government said that their contribution of $9 billion represents, according to what the U.S. has told them, 20 percent of the overall cost, which is estimated to be at $45 billion, according to the Japanese, for a 3-month period. Is that an accurate estimate on the part of the Japanese who say they gave 20 percent of the U.S.-estimated cost? A I have to refrain from answering your question. Q Margaret, what was the percentage that the Secretary discussed with the Kuwaitis when he discussed with them the fact that $13.5 billion was a percentage of the total? A I have to refrain from answering that question. Q Will there be an American share of the total? A I have to refrain from answering that question. Q Margaret, was that $13.5 billion figure mentioned when the Secretary met the Emir of Kuwait in Taif? A No. As I've said, I think everyday this week, when the Secretary was in Taif and met with the Emir and the Crown Prince, he said, "These costs, gentlemen, are what the United States is basing this on should hostilities not ensue." They have. He said, "Should hostilities break out, I will then, obviously, have a different figure because it obviously is going to cost more." Q Margaret, could you ask, when you ask these experts on the numbers, could you, when you give us those other questions, give us a list of how much has been received from which countries? A For 1991? Q For 1991-1990. Basically, give us a scorecard, if you will, of where we've gone. A I'm not sure that we will. In 1991, Japan -- the Prime Minister just announced what they have done yesterday. The Kuwaiti Government just announced today, in the form of their Ambassador. So when you say, "What they've spent," I'm not sure it moves that fast. Q How much has been pledged, how much has been received since the start of this, if you will, campaign contribution drive that started last fall? In other words, give us a scorecard as to where we are; where we started and how much -- A I'm not sure that I'm going to do a scorecard for you. Every government has made public, all through 1990, what their pledges were to the coalition. Two governments have now, in the last 48 hours, said what theirs are for 1991. I'm not sure that I'm going to do a scorecard for you on what everybody has done. It's all out there. It's public. Q Has everything that's been pledged, to date, by all the governments been given? A My understanding is the last time the Administration spoke to this -- I believe 1990 -- they characterized it as 80 percent or more has been spent or received. I will check for you, because I haven't looked into this. It's been a month now in 1991, I'll check to see if the 1990 books are closed out and everything that everyone pledged was one hundred percent done. Q That would be both to Frontline States as well as to the United States? A I understand. Q The 80 percent figure is both? A That's the number that comes to my mind -- please don't hold me to it. The last time the Administration spoke to this, that I remember, was weeks ago. You can look through NEXIS as fast as I can to find out what was the last time that we spoke to it. That's just off the top of my head -- the figure I remember. Q Margaret, does the United States have any reaction to the reports that the Iraqis have closed their border with Jordan and are not allowing potential refugees to escape through Jordan? And, also, have you made any representation or asked questions of the Iraqis about the missing journalist, Bob Simon? A I know that the Pentagon, as you know, has the military doing everything they can to find these four missing journalists. I am not aware that the United States Government has made a request of the Iraqi Government. And I would have to -- because I don't have the specifics -- refer you to your colleague at the Pentagon for what Pete [Williams] can tell you about what the military is doing to try to find these four journalists. As far as refugees, we, as of this briefing, were unable to confirm or deny that Iraq has closed its borders with Jordan. So I can't tell you if it's true or not true. Q One last question about the -- Q Did the United States ask Jordan? A I'm sure they did, Barry. The Refugee Bureau here in this Department cannot confirm it or deny it. Q No, I'm sorry. Is it possible to elaborate a bit? Is it not clear that the border is totally closed? I ask because Jordan's position in this situation has been kind of ambiguous, at least. Is Jordan cooperating with the United States in information along these lines? A Concerning refugees? Q Yeah, because they were taking a lot of refugees and I think they were incurring some big bucks for doing that. A Now, there are currently about 6,600 displaced persons in Jordan. This group is being cared for and will soon be repatriated to their countries of origin or safe haven. So I have to believe that Jordan is, as it has throughout this, been -- Q Still housing them -- willing to? A -- 6,600 displaced persons right now. As you all know, and we've said throughout the week, there has not been, as was anticipated, this massive immigration to these borders of hundreds of thousands of people. That has not, to date, so far happened. Q Margaret, if I could just follow up on my question. I know you're saying the United States doesn't know what the situation is on the border. But is it the United States position that they would want that border to remain open for refugees to flee? A Of course, the United States would want refugees, if they choose to flee, to flee. Q On the Patriot batteries, how many of them have been sent? When will they arrive, and are more planned? A You have to go to the Pentagon for all those types of questions, please. Q The Iraqis announced this morning, I think on radio, that they were not going -- they were no longer going to show pictures on Iraqi television of American POWs. My question, I guess, is, I know the United States didn't like the way the POWs were treated by the Iraqis, but there were some people who thought it was, at least, good to see that the men were alive and so on by seeing the pictures. Do you have any comment on the decision to show no evidence of American POWs on Iraqi TV? A As you know, the Geneva Accords call for this not to be taking place. It specifically addresses itself to it. So our position has been calling for them to abide by the Geneva Accords. It is what they should have done in the first place. It was, in my opinion, in the worse possible taste to force people to sit there -- and the last one I saw was being interviewed by Saddam Hussein's Information Minister. I mean, come on! Q Do you have any evidence that Iraq has provided name, rank, serial number of any of the people that are in their possession through the International Red Cross or through the Red Crescent or any of the other humanitarian -- A I'm not aware of that, John. There was a press conference yesterday in Geneva with the International Red Cross. I'll be honest with you, I don't know what they said there. Q They say that -- at that time, they said they had not. A Had not? I'll check for you. Q Has the U.S. requested the ICRC to conduct an on-site -- to request on-site visits with Prisoners of War in Iraq? A I don't know if we have made such a request. I know that we have been dealing with the ICRC on our Prisoners of War and have obviously pointing out our concerns on those that the Iraqi Government holds. I don't know. I'll be happy to find out for you. Q Since the Secretary voiced his appreciation for the Israeli restraint in the aftermath of this latest attack, does that mean that he received indications or pledges that Israel will not retaliate on the basis of this most latest attack?

[US Policy on Israel]

A As you know, we do not answer these types of questions. I will restate for you what our policy is: The United States stands with Israel in defending against Iraqi aggression. The Unites States is, as has been for many years, committed to the security of Israel. We recognize and respect the right of every sovereign state to defend itself and, thus, have never questioned Israel's right to respond to attack. We also recognize and respect Israel's desire not to be drawn into this conflict and greatly admire Israel's restraint in the face of Iraq's deliberate and murderous effort to widen the conflict caused by its aggression against Kuwait. Q Margaret, the chairman of Brazil's largest weapons maker says they are continuing to provide technical assistance to Iraq on multiple rocket launchers and air defense radar. Does the United States have any comment about those declarations? A Who said this? Q The chairman of the Brazilian company, AviBras. It's the biggest arms manufacturer in Brazil. A We are concerned by such reports and are seeking clarification from the Brazilian Government. If true, we would ask Brazil to block the company's assistance. Such activities, if they are taking place, would clearly be in violation of the U.N. Security Council resolutions prohibiting trade with Iraq. Q On another subject, you talked a long time ago in the briefing about travel advisories. Has there been a change in either the travel advisory or the travel recommendation status for American Government diplomats, dependents, or private citizens in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia? A Yes. Last night -- I believe you'll find it in the Press Office -- there was a new travel advisory that was issued for all of Saudi Arabia which is authorized -- (TO STAFF) is it voluntary departure? Which is it? MR. BOUCHER: Voluntary departure for dependents. MS. TUTWILER: Right. Authorized voluntary departure for dependents. Q And what was the rationale for making that change? A As in all of these decisions, Ralph, a number of people put different pieces of information into it before we issue a travel advisory. At this point in time last night, those decisions were made and we issued the travel advisory last night. Each country is different. They go through any number of criteria, messages from the Ambassador, recommendations from DS, recommendations from other individuals here who have responsibilities for certain parts of the State Department portfolio. Q If I can focus on one part of that, I think the travel advisory concerning Dhahran had earlier recommended, or authorized voluntary departure. I think that was done on the basis of the fact that the Scuds were thought to be able to reach Dhahran. It was not authorized until last night, as you say, for Riyadh. Is that because the United States discovered recently that the Scuds were capable of reaching Riyadh? A Number l, I'm unaware that the reason for the travel advisory for Dhahran -- I'll have to go back and look -- was based solely on a military decision that Scuds could reach that city. As I've told you -- for instance, we did Tanzania last night. Q (Inaudible) solely? A I don't know, Ralph. There's been no reason for me to get into it. Experts here who have been doing this for years make these judgments based on information and analysis of each situation in each country. I don't, as a rule, and have not -- go look at all the travel advisories we have out -- go and get into a detailed analysis of "Why did you make this decision concerning this country or this city." Q But Riyadh and Dhahran are the same country. A The same criteria and group of individuals who are experts in these fields make these recommendations to the Secretary of State based on their best analysis of the situation. My understanding is that a number of factors go into these decisions concerning all of these travel advisories for all of these countries around the world. Q One before our departure, please. Go ahead. Oh, I thought you wanted to ask a question. Thank you. We'll execute our departure. A Thanks. (Press briefing concluded at 1:19 p.m.)(###)