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                         DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                         DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

                                                      DPC #82

                   MONDAY, JUNE 7, 1993, 12:56 P.M.
                (ON THE RECORD UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED)


          SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER:  This is a big surprise.  I decided to 
take over the briefing today.

          I have a brief statement by the President relating to a 
departing figure.  This is a message from the President to Richard 
Boucher.  It reads, as follows:

          "Richard, as you leave the State Department Briefing Room for 
the last time, I want to thank you for your unstinting and invaluable 
services to this Administration.  You've served your country with 
dignity, integrity, and aplomb.  You've deservedly earned your 
reputation for forthrightness and honesty and consistent articulation of 
U.S. foreign policy positions.

          ."You're truly a credit to the Foreign Service, and I am 
certain I speak for all Americans in thanking you for your previous 
service and wishing you well in any future assignments."

          Well, Richard, that's a very nice statement.  I know better 
than to try to top the President's statement, so I'll only say very 
little myself.

          I think Richard has been a superb Spokesman.  He's become not 
only a friend but a trusted advisor.  He's one of those people who has 
far exceeded my expectations by his performance.  I regret very much his 
leaving this role.  I fully understand his desire to get back into the 
foreign policy track, making foreign policy rather than trying to 
explain it to you.

          My task from this point is to help the President find a next 
assignment for Richard that is consistent with and reflective of his 
very high talent and consistent with the integrity and performance that 
he's given to all of you.  So I wanted to come down and do this myself 
because I think so highly of Richard, and he's performed so well and 
with such integrity for the Department and for the country in the time 
he's been here.

          Thanks very much.

          (Applause)

          MR. BOUCHER:  I guess this is the last thing that I'll say On 
the Record.  Mr. Secretary, I thank you and the President very much for 
the guidance and for the opportunities that you've given to me, and I 
look forward to continuing to serve wherever you think best.

          (Applause)

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that's a very hard act to top in many 
ways, so I won't try to other than to express my own personal warm 
feelings for Richard.  I think many of you know that as I begin my 
briefings here at the Department, he's been extraordinarily helpful to 
me and I think nobody could have a better tutor.  I hope to continue the 
tradition that he established here at this podium for knowledgable, 
factual information about the important foreign policy decisions of the 
United States Government.

          I'll do my best.  I think, as many of you know, I'll probably 
make numerous mistakes but they will not be mistakes that are 
intentional.  And I'll do my best, at any time I do, to clear that up 
right away so that we can make sure that you've got access to the 
information you need to file your reports and to cover the business of 
this building and the business of the United States Government.

          With that, why don't we go to questions.

          Q    Do you want to talk about the massacre which apparently 
occurred yesterday in Liberia?

          MR. McCURRY:  In Liberia.  Why don't we start with that.  
There are reliable reports that we received that 250 to 300 civilians 
were killed very early Sunday morning in a camp for displaced persons on 
the Firestone Rubber Plantation near Harbel, Liberia.  An estimated 750 
civilians were injured; some seriously.

          We have received reports that another camp for civilians was 
also attacked, but at this point these reports are not confirmed.

          Clearly, we are shocked and sadden by the senseless killings 
which occurred.  We condemn this reprehensible slaughter of displaced 
persons, including women and children.

          The United Nations Secretary General currently has a special 
representative that's working diligently to arrange a meeting of the 
warring factions in order to bring an end to the three-year civil war in 
Liberia.

          The United States strongly urges all parties to cooperate with 
the U.N.'s effort and to respect the rights of non-combatants.  We will 
continue to support the work of the United Nations and the West African 
Force which is deployed in the region, and we hope that this unfortunate 
incident will not be repeated.

          Q    Any idea who did it, Mike?

          MR. McCURRY:  Some witnesses have blamed members of Charles 
Taylor's National Patriotic Front of Liberia.  NPFL troops have mounted 
incursions into the area over the past two weeks, and reports of NPFL 
massacres of civilians in other areas upcountry have been received over 
the past month.  At the moment, we cannot confirm who is responsible 
until more facts are known.

          Q    Do you want to comment before we change subjects.

          MR. McCURRY:  Any other on that?

          Q    One more on the same subject.  There are reports in 
recent weeks that said Taylor was on the run, that the ECOMOG forces had 
gained the upper hand in that fight.  Does this latest massacre conflict 
or confirm -- or what do they say about those reports?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think it indicates that there's still a great 
deal more work that has to be done to bring about some settlement.  I 
think all sides in the Liberian conflict have committed human rights 
atrocities.  All sides have denied responsibility.  The NPFL has never 
admitted responsibility for the killings that have occurred in the past.  
But I think that the status now, as you look ahead, is to do what can be 
done through the auspices of the United Nations and the West African 
Force to ensure that the events are not repeated.

          Q    Still in that region, Mike.  Would you care to offer us a 
situation report, as the U.S. sees it, on the peacekeeping operation in 
Mogadishu?  And let me just add, I'd be interested in your assessment of 
whether the transfer of authority and power to the U.N.-guided 
operation, in view of the current incident, has been successful?

          MR. McCURRY:  Let's do a couple of things.  I think it might 
be valuable for us to review, first, what we know about the situation 
and then a little bit to the actions taken by the United Nations.

          To review what happened, UNOSOM conducted arms searches at 
several locations in Mogadishu on Saturday, including at the site of 
Radio Mogadishu.  Factional leaders were given advance notice of these 
searches so that there would be absolutely no chance for 
misunderstanding of the activity. The searches took place without 
incident.

          Soon afterwards, at approximately 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, 
Pakistani troops were ambushed at several locations in the southern part 
of Mogadishu without provocation.  During the course of their normal 
rounds, one of the sites of ambush was the site of Radio Mogadishu, 
presently under the control of the Somali National Alliance, which is a 
faction of the United Somali Congress controlled by General Mohammed 
Farah Aideed.

          In the fighting which continued throughout the day on 
Saturday, there were some 60 wounded, and we deeply regret to say that 
at least 22 Pakistani troops were killed in action. Three U.S. 
servicemen received non-life-threatening injuries during the battles 
that day.

          Both the United Nations Secretary General, Boutros-Ghali, and 
the United Nations Security Council, meeting in emergency session on the 
morning of June 6 -- yesterday -- has strongly condemned the deaths of 
at least 22 Pakistani peacekeeping troops and have called for an 
investigation of what happened so that those responsible can be 
arrested, tried, and punished.

          As to the status of the UNOSOM II forces, we understand that 
United Nations military commanders are presently assessing their needs 
for additional equipment and will soon issue requests to member 
governments.  We will promptly review any such request received by the 
United States Government.

          I can't say at this time what equipment or services we'll be 
prepared to provide to UNOSOM II, but we continue to remain committed to 
the efforts to assist those in Somalia who have suffered, and we will 
respond appropriately to the request when we receive them.

          Q    How many American troops are in there now?  And is there 
any thought being given to sending more in?

          MR. McCURRY:  We have I think deployed, as part of UNOSOM II, 
1,100 peacekeepers that are part of the force there. I think they are 
associated with the Tenth Mountain Division from Fort Drummel, although 
I'd ask that you double-check that with the Pentagon.

          We also have, in addition to that, deployed, as part of the 
U.S. Quick Reaction Force -- the Quick Reaction Force was mobilized 
yesterday in support of the Pakistani Brigade, and they now remain on 
alert in support of the UNOSOM troops in Mogadishu.

          Q    How many?

          Q    What is that number?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know the exact count.  The Department of 
Defense apparently has the exact count or the numbers that are involved 
there.  They were involved in an incident yesterday that you may have 
seen reported on the wires involving a helicopter attack on, I believe, 
some ammunition dumps.

          Q    But what does that mean, "they were mobilized?" Are they 
there on the ground normally anyway and they were sent into action, or 
are they brought off ships, or what?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think they are in the region there in support 
of the UNOSOM efforts.  The Department of Defense does have some more on 
that, if you want to check in there.

          Q    Mike, what is overall -- what does this incident, or 
these series of incidents say overall about the U.N.'s ability to take 
over the U.S. role?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think it's a reminder that, first of all, this 
is a place in which the United States and others associated with the 
U.N. peacekeeping force have been in danger as they fulfill a 
humanitarian mission.

          The United States does remain committed to that mission.  It's 
important.  It reflects both our humanitarian concerns and the concerns 
of the world community that we continue to provide assistance to those 
who have suffered.

          Q    It doesn't answer the question of whether the U.N. -- the 
transfer of control from the U.S. to the U.N. has been successful.  You 
say the U.S. remains committed to it.  Is the U.N. up to handling this 
kind of situation?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think the fact that the U.N. is now taking 
steps through military planners to seek additional forces underscores 
their determination to make sure that it is an effective force.  And, as 
I indicated, we stand ready to respond appropriately.

          Q    Will the U.N. -- does the U.S. think the U.N. should 
retaliate in some way for this attack on U.N. forces?

          MR. McCURRY:  I would not want to comment on any possible 
military action.

          Q    Have they asked for additional U.S. forces?  And how 
would we view such a request?

          MR. McCURRY:  Well, I think as I said, they are assessing the 
situation now and determining what additional material and equipment 
they need.  If they did make such a request to the United States, we 
would be willing to respond appropriately, but it would depend on the 
nature of the request, obviously.

          Q    You keep saying equipment and materiel.  Our questions 
are going to the issue of troops?

          MR. McCURRY:  The size of force?

          Q    Of troops.  Is the U.S. willing to respond to a request 
for additional forces as well?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that's beyond the bounds of what's been 
discussed today.  I think the question at the moment is what type of 
weaponry, what type of equipment is necessary to fulfill the mission.  I 
think we'll stay concentrated on that question.

          Q    Mike, you also talked about the request for services.  
What did you mean by "services?"  Is that services being provided by 
troops, such as guard duty, such as -- what do you mean by that?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that would be technical assistance that 
would be provided in furtherance of the mission there.

          A question over here, still on this.

          Q    Is there any doubt in the minds of this building that 
General Aideed is the culprit here?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think, as I indicated, we are not in a 
position to say that.  I think more facts have to raised.  But I think 
noting that this incident occurred in areas that are presumed to be in 
his area of predominant influence, in a sense, speaks for itself.

          Question in the back there.

          Q    What's the status of the discussions with North Korea and 
Mr. Gallucci?

          MR. McCURRY:  Let's stay -- some what to stay on this 
question.

          Q    Mike, the U.N. Security Council called, I think, on 
Sunday for those responsible for the fighting to be arrested.  Is the 
U.S. Government ready to put the Rapid Reaction Force at the disposal of 
the U.N. to seek, find, and arrest those responsible for the fighting?

          MR. McCURRY:  As far as I'd be willing to go on that point 
right now is I would say that UNOSOM II forces under that resolution are 
authorized to detain suspects until they can be presented before 
competent judicial authorities.  And I don't want to speculate on the 
process by which that would happen at this point.

          Q    Apparently, the U.S. troops are the best performing 
troops in Somalia right now.  It was clearly demonstrated by the 
Pakistanis calling on the U.S.  Is it in the scope of the reach of the 
U.S. troops to perform that duty?

          MR. McCURRY:  It's not specifically within the scope of the 
resolution.  I'd refer you back to the specific resolution -- the 
provision in that resolution that insists upon the arrest, the 
prosecution, and the punishment of those responsible for this incident 
will require a coordinated effort, surely. But the exact role that will 
be played by whom there, I didn't want to speculate upon it right now.

          Q    Didn't you just say there was authorization to detain 
them?  Just a second ago, didn't you?

          MR. McCURRY:  That's within UNOSOM II's authorization, 
according to the resolution.

          Q    So that means it's within the authority of the U.S. 
forces, who are part of UNOSOM II, to detain as distinct -- you're 
making a distinction between detention and arrest?

          MR. McCURRY:  Ralph, it goes beyond the wording of the exact 
resolution itself.  I think the question is more a question of law 
enforcement activities; who would actually seek to arrest those 
responsible and how they would then be apprehended.  I think it's a 
question that goes beyond what's addressed in the resolution passed by 
the United Nations.

          Q    Mike, do we support the resolution?  Are we in favor of 
arresting those responsible?

          MR. McCURRY:  We are strongly in support -- it passed 
unanimously, I believe, 15-to-0.  I believe Ambassador Albright had a 
substantial statement on it that would be available at the U.N., too.

          Q    Are there any AID personnel or private American volunteer 
groups involved?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes, let me cover some of that because obviously 
that would be of great concern to families and to others.

          We do not have a precise number of Americans currently in 
Somalia, but we believe there are approximately 100, including relief 
workers and those who are there under the auspices of the United 
Nations.  There are currently seven people remaining with the United 
States Liaison Office in Mogadishu.  Nine others left this morning for 
Nairobi where they will remain temporarily.  The nine Americans who had 
been with the U.S. Liaison Office, and an unknown number of other 
Americans, left for Nairobi on a U.S. military aircraft.  There are 
shuttles going on as the draw-down has occurred.

          We are still trying to get information -- to your specific 
question -- still trying to get information on the status of relief 
operations being conducted by various organizations and whether those 
organizations have begun evacuating their staffs.

          There are reports that relief organizations have begun 
evacuations.  They've been offered space on UNOSOM airplanes. As Admiral 
Howe stated earlier today -- he gave a radio interview earlier in the 
day -- we cannot continue the relief activity that had been offered in 
Somalia with this type of activity occurring, and that's why it's so 
urgent that the violence in that country come to an end as soon as 
possible so that the relief efforts can resume.

          Q    Specifically, what does that mean, Mike?  Does that mean 
you can't reach outlying cities now?  The convoy is not going out from 
Mogadishu anymore?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think the assessment is that there are some 
areas that might be too dangerous and that putting relief workers in 
harm's way would not be advisable.

          Q    Mike, you said the Quick Reaction Force was mobilized 
Sunday.  Where were they Saturday?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know, David.  I do know that the 
Pentagon probably has some more on this.

          Q    President Clinton has written a letter to the Pakistani 
Prime Minister, can you confirm it -- expressing his regrets and 
sympathy?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think both the statements by -- I don't know 
if the White House has issued a statement -- I'd refer you to the White 
House for that.  But, clearly, it is felt by the United States 
Government and reaffirmed in the resolution passed by the United Nations 
yesterday the deep sense of regret of the loss of life by those 
Pakistanis who were involved in a mission that was most fundamentally 
directed to the humanitarian goal of saving lives.  That makes, perhaps, 
this additional --

          Q    That a letter has been sent?  Will you confirm or deny 
the letter has been handed over in Islamabad by the American Ambassador?

          MR. McCURRY:  A statement from the President?

          Q    Yes, the letter from the President to the Prime Minister 
-- do you confirm or deny it?

          MR. McCURRY:  I can't confirm or deny that.  Please check with 
the White House on that.  I have no reason to doubt that.  I just don't 
have anything on it.

          Q    Do you see the possibility of a Bosnia effect here, that 
Aideed has embolded perhaps by the U.N.'s inability to respond to 
challenges effectively in Bosnia, and therefore perhaps it's opportune 
to challenge the U.N.?

          MR. McCURRY:  That would be a very mistaken assumption for him 
to make.

          Q    Is this a concern?  Is this something that has been 
discussed --

          MR. McCURRY:  No, I wouldn't want to imply that.  I think as 
we've covered already, there are -- it would be wrong for that 
interpretation to be made.  I think the resolve of the international 
community to deliver humanitarian aid to those who need it is 
reaffirmed, in a sense, by the passage of the United Nations Security 
Council resolution yesterday.  I think the sense of the world community 
and the outrage expressed and the concern about the future course of the 
relief efforts there make it very, very clear that that type of 
interference with that type of mission will not be tolerated.

          Q    But there's been outrage expressed numerous times in 
Bosnia.  And to use the phrase "it's popular in Somalia," the Serbian 
warlords seem to not be intimidated about stopping relief supplies, 
interfering with U.N. personnel in Bosnia. Why should the Somali leaders 
be any more fearful?

          MR. McCURRY:  I hesitate to draw any type of parallels.  I 
don't think that would be a wise thing to do.

          Q    How long has it been since we've talked to Aideed?  And 
was there any indication as to why this occurred at this time?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know that we have had any direct 
conversations with Aideed.  We obviously are concerned about the 
situation and we remain in contact with those in the area.  I think our 
concern about the security of American citizens, both relief workers and 
those participating as part of the United Nations force, speaks for 
itself, and it has been so communicated.

          Q    Mike, would it be wrong to characterize the United States 
as reluctant to commit any further troops -- ground troops -- to UNOSOM?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think it would be wrong to characterize it 
that way.  It's just a situation that's under evaluation at the moment 
as the military planners in the region assess what the further needs are 
to carry out the mission of the troops there.

          Q    Mike, following up on this question about talking with 
Aideed.  When the U.S. was in charge of the operation, one of the 
primary features of it was that it had a person on the ground whose job 
it was, essentially, to remain in close contact with all of the various 
factions, including his.  Is the U.N. doing that now?  Does the U.S. 
think the U.N. is doing a good enough job of that part of the mission at 
this point -- staying in touch with these factions?

          MR. McCURRY:  I would not want to comment on how the United 
Nations force, how UNOSOM II carries out that function.  But remaining 
in contact with those forces in the region is something that we 
obviously would continue to do.

          Q    Is the U.S. continuing to do that now?

          MR. McCURRY:  We have been in contact with various parties in 
the region in the aftermath of this event.

          Q    Another feature of the U.S. mission over there was to 
disarm these people.  Yet Aideed obviously has some pretty heavy 
armaments left.  How do you explain that?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't explain it, other than to say that 
they're responding to this specific incident.  They clearly are now 
considering what other forces they need to compile in the area.  That 
was addressed also in the U.N. resolution passed yesterday, asking that 
current force levels be brought up to some of the anticipated levels 
that were originally planned for UNOSOM II.

          Q    So it would be fair to say that there is still a lot of 
disarming that needs to be done in Somalia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think you could judge from the events 
yesterday that is at least some.

          Q    Why isn't UNOSOM II armed to these anticipated levels 
that you just mentioned?  Is there a failure on some particular 
countries to supply enough armaments to make it --

          MR. McCURRY:  No, I think they've been working -- I think one 
of the things that they -- you should probably check in the debate at 
the United Nations and in the text of the resolution itself some of the 
language there.  It speaks specifically of bringing levels up to those 
that had been requested.  I actually don't have that with me right now, 
but it would be worth checking into that, I think.

          Q    Mike, a number of relief workers had to be pulled out of 
Mogadishu.  When do you expect them to be back there? And how much in 
jeopardy is the entire humanitarian operation in Mogadishu, in the 
capital?

          MR. McCURRY:  It's impossible to speculate right now when they 
might be able to resume the delivery of humanitarian supplies.  
Certainly, that's something that everyone would want to see happen as 
quickly as possible.  But I can't comment at this point about when that 
might happen again.

          David.

          Q    The U.S. voted for a resolution which talks about 
bringing the force levels up, but you're saying that all the U.N. is 
doing now is considering what further equipment and materiel would be 
needed and that the U.S. would respond to those requests?

          MR. McCURRY:  Basically, that's right.  They are assessing 
their needs for additional equipment.  They'll soon issue a request to 
member governments.

          Q    Where are we on force levels?

          MR. McCURRY:  As I said -- I said a couple of times -- we'll 
review those requests when they're made, and we will be prepared to 
respond appropriately.  I think that's something that they're going to 
have to -- they're clearly in a position of evaluating that now.

          Q    Maybe I missed something.  I thought you were making a 
distinction between equipment and materiel, which we were prepared to 
respond to and you weren't sort of talking about being prepared to 
respond to a request for additional troops.

          MR. McCURRY:  I wasn't responding specifically to the nature 
of the requests that would come in.

          As I said once already, I think that the request that we 
understand -- the military commanders are assessing currently their 
needs for additional equipment.  I'll leave it at that.

          Q    Is the U.S considering -- aside from the three injured 
servicemen, were any other U.S. service personnel withdrawn or evacuated 
from Somalia as a result of this incident?

          MR. McCURRY:  You mean, in addition to the three --

          Q    To the three who were evacuated for medical purposes.  
Were any others withdrawn?

          MR. McCURRY:  Of the military forces?

          Q    Yes.  Military forces.

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't have anything beyond just the people I 
referred to earlier who were with the Liaison Office.

          Q    I guess what I am getting at is, you talked about private 
volunteer personnel and relief workers.

          MR. McCURRY:  Right.

          Q    People being evacuated.  In some cases, you have talked 
about medivacs for injured service personnel, and you have talked about 
the 22 Pakistanis who were killed.  My question is, is the U.S., in 
light of this episode over the weekend, considering reducing the level 
of its forces in Somalia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't believe there have been any discussions 
of that nature.  I mean, to the contrary, the discussions at the U.N. 
were, you know, concerning the deployments necessary to meet the full 
requirements specified in some of the earlier discussions at the U.N.

          Q    Mike, does the U.S. believe that this was a sort of an 
isolated incident caused by the attempt to take over and disarm certain 
areas; or, more broadly, a challenge to U.N. authority?

          MR. McCURRY:  That's a difficult question to ask because, you 
know, we don't have hard factual information on who is responsible.  We 
have noted the area in which this occurred was the area of principal 
influence by one of the warlords in that region.  Whether or not that 
indicates some change of pattern of activity there or not is just 
something that would require a great deal of speculation as to their 
motives.  It is just something we are not in a position to do.

          Q    Can I change the subject?

          MR. McCURRY:  Let's finish up on this.  We've got a couple 
more questions.

          Q    Still in the African region.  I don't know if you want to 
stick to Africa.  Tomorrow, you have a meeting here at the State 
Department of the sponsors of the Angolan Peace Accord.  Do you have 
anything that you can offer?  What you plan to achieve?  And could you 
comment on the latest incidents there, particularly an oil spillage of 
Texaco, I believe?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't have anything specifically on that.  As 
to Angola and additional provision of assistance to Angola, I'd like to 
take the question on that and get some factual information.  I saw a 
wire account over the weekend about some additional funding that may 
have been provided.  I just don't have anything here on that right now, 
but we'll take that question and see if we can get some additional 
information.

          Q    I'd like to switch topics completely.  Can I ask you 
about the appointment of Boston Mayor Flynn to be the Ambassador to the 
Vatican?  Has he expressed reservations about that post directly to the 
State Department?  And how does the State Department defined the post?  
Is it strictly ceremonial?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think it's -- well, the answer to the second 
question first, it's not a ceremonial post.  It's obviously a very 
important post involving our representations before the Holy See.  I 
think Mayor Flynn, as far as the Department knows, is excited about 
serving as Ambassador, and we are excited to have him serve.

          I believe that his formal paperwork has not yet been sent to 
the Senate, but I expect that will happen very shortly, and I guess, in 
direct answer to the question, I'm not aware of any reservations at all.

          Q    Will there be enough in his budget for him to travel 
outside of Rome?  He has expressed concerns that he won't be able to do 
that.

          MR. McCURRY:  I think we probably addressed that in the past 
here, but there are provisions that are made for ambassadors of modest 
means to supplement the routine representational allowance that they 
have, and also provisions that allow them to travel on official business 
back and forth, and I expect those accommodations would be made in the 
case of the Mayor.

          Q    One follow-up:  Do you know when his confirmation 
hearings might be at all?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know.  I don't think we can know that at 
this point, because I don't believe his paperwork has been finished up 
and sent to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee yet.  But we hope 
that that would be soon.

          Q    Mike, is there any effort to move the White House along 
on this, or light a fire under somebody?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think we -- the Department -- I think the 
Secretary, the Department are in regular contact with White House 
personnel, and we are satisfied that appointments are proceeding 
satisfactorily.  We are at an equivalent point, I believe, in prior 
Administrations.  We have secured and named to posts about roughly the 
equivalent number of new ambassadors, and we are satisfied we are making 
progress.

          Q    Is it true that the President offered the ambassadorship 
in Japan to two different people?

          MR. McCURRY:  That would be, obviously, something that you 
would be well-advised to check at the White House.

          Q    Mike, back on Flynn, you said you were not aware of any 
reservations, but the Boston press was saying last week that -- they 
were quoting State Department officials as saying the requests that he 
had made for travel allowances, et cetera, were way out of bounds.

          Are you familiar with any of that?

          MR. McCURRY:  That doesn't -- any suggestion that his requests 
were out of bounds does not reflect the thinking of the State Department 
or its senior officials.  I'm not sure who would have said such things.

          Q    Can you -- on the business of the Chinese boat people 
coming ashore now in New York, and, more recently, on the West Coast, is 
there any -- is the State Department doing anything to perhaps take a 
look at what is the source of this and what is the problem in China -- 
whether it's a human rights problem -- and whether all of these people 
are supposed to get asylum when they come to this country?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes, we are looking into that.  Let me review 
this, as a result of the incident yesterday.

          We regret the loss of life in the landing of illegals from the 
ship "Golden Venture."  This dramatizes, we feel, the dangers of alien 
smuggling by sea.

          Once an alien-smuggling ship enters United States waters, 
domestic, local and federal agencies take the lead in inquiring about 
the situation and looking at it, so for that reason the State Department 
had no specific role to play in the case yesterday.

          However, I think, as you know, the Immigration and 
Naturalization Service did.  They have made quite a lengthy statement 
about the events yesterday, and you may want to check with them on that.

          Now, as to the larger question, we have repeatedly raised this 
issue with the Chinese Government.  In addition, we are seeking 
international cooperation in attempting to prevent these ships from 
being refitted for alien smuggling, and from leaving foreign waters 
heading for the United States.

          I'll leave it at that.  It's a question that we have raised --

          Q    What is the Chinese Government doing or not doing that 
you'd like them to do or not do?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't want to -- I don't think I want to 
get into specifically the things.  I think it is the question of how you 
-- how they are transshipped and what provisions are made for them 
entering ships.  But I would want to really check further to get details 
on what we have discussed specifically.

          Q    Do you think that the Chinese Government is aware of 
these people?  I think they are --

          MR. McCURRY:  I think they are very aware.  I'm sure that they 
see the press accounts.  They are aware that citizens have been leaving, 
have been attempting to enter the United States in some cases illegally.  
And it is a matter that we have raised directly with them.

          Q    With the increasing numbers of illegal Chinese immigrants 
to the U.S., is the Administration reviewing the grounds under which it 
grants political asylum to Chinese? Specifically, for example, the 
special consideration given to those who claim they are fleeing a one-
child policy.

          MR. McCURRY:  I'd want to -- you know, I'd want to double-
check on that.  I think that's a question where we will have specific 
conversations with INS about it, and I'd like to double-check with them 
before we answer the question specifically, but we can take the 
question.

          Q    Can you also tell me what the Chinese Government has been 
saying after repeatedly getting the question raised?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'll double-check that, since we are going to 
take the question.  We'll look into that question, as well.

          Q    When was the last time this issue was raised?  Was it 
raised during the Assistant Secretary's recent visit, or on some 
previous occasion?

          MR. McCURRY:  Okay.

          Q    Or more recently?

          MR. McCURRY:  More recently.  Whether it was raised when 
Assistant Secretary Lord was in the region, too.  I'll double-check 
that.

          Q    When you get the responses this afternoon, do you mind 
faxing it to the regulars, because it is a pretty hot topic?

          MR. McCURRY:  We will do our customarily efficient job of 
distributing it.

          Q    Mike, have we -- on this same subject -- have we been in 
touch with countries who have registered some of the ships that have 
been used in this cargo, and to try to seek their help to divert ships?

          MR. McCURRY:  I believe that some of our diplomatic efforts 
have gone to the question of the flagging of those vessels.  Since we 
are looking into this and getting some further information, I'll check 
into that, as well.

          Q    Mike, are these individuals going to be sent back or 
returned or sent someplace else?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think they are all -- I mean, they are all now 
in the process of being talked to by the appropriate authorities in New 
York, and clearly the INS is having conversations directly, so I would 
want to refer you over there in that direction.

          Q    But I am asking you because of the Administration's 
broader policy on that same subject or a similar subject with Haiti -- 
will these individuals receive interviews, and will they have interviews 
with U.S. Government personnel on U.S. soil before being -- before their 
cases are disposed of?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't want to guess at the answer.  I would 
want to make sure I have exactly the right answer.  So I would refer you 
to INS, but I do believe that from press accounts and from some things 
that I saw earlier, I think they all were on U.S. soil and being talked 
to.

          Q    So that the implications for a Haitian would be that if 
they can get to the U.S., then they are in better shape than if they 
stay where they are.

          MR. McCURRY:  Again, that would be an incorrect drawing of a 
parallel between two dissimilar situations.

          Q    Is the U.S. asking the Chinese Government for permission 
to establish asylum interview outposts throughout China to allow for 
these interviews to take place on the territory of China?

          MR. McCURRY:  Ralph, that's a question that goes a little bit 
beyond the bounds of credibility.  Why don't we check further on the 
situation and get some more information for you so you can --

          Q    Do you know what the asylum issues there are related or 
in any way -- or they won't be seen the same way by the people seeking 
asylum in the U.S.?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think you will find in the coming months that 
I'm not one who draws parallels easily between dissimilar situations 
that have different facts.

          Q    New subject?

          MR. McCURRY:  New subject.

          Q    Yes, a different subject.  What's the status of the talks 
with North Korea?

          MR. McCURRY:  North Korea.  The talks -- I think as many of 
you know, Assistant Secretary Gallucci concluded a second disappointing 
series of talks with the North Koreans on Friday.

          He indicated at that time in a statement that we are exploring 
with friends and allies the next steps that could be taken.

          We have agreed with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea 
to hold another round of talks on these issues on June l0th in New York.

          Our principal goals in these talks remain as they have been, 
to seek a non-nuclear Korean Peninsula.  We seek to promote that non-
nuclear Peninsula by achieving North Korea's commitment to:  One, remain 
in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty regime; two, to carry out its 
obligations to the IAEA; and, three, to implement fully the North/South 
de-nuclearization declaration.

          Now, while we continue to review these steps, we are mindful 
of the fact that very shortly the deadline on withdrawal of the NPT 
approaches, and we continue to review future steps with members of the 
international community, and we are currently discussing possible United 
Nations Security Council resolutions that may be needed.

          Q    Well, have you actually started talk about the specifics 
-- have you started to draft resolution?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know who is holding a pen, but we are 
having conversations and discussions in New York at the United Nations 
about the possible need for further resolutions.

          Q    Could you give us a sense of where are the sticking 
points with the North Koreans?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't want to get into the specific 
conversations that have been held to date or where they stand. I think 
that there has been some information publicly, and obviously since we 
will continue the talks later this week, that provides another 
opportunity for them to discuss further the issues that have been 
raised.

          So going further in describing the status of the talks at the 
moment is not something that I want to do.

          Q    Is there any give at all on their side?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think on some of our principal concerns, there 
was not much movement, not much progress, and, as a result, we 
characterized the talks as being disappointing.

          Q    How quickly would you move on a resolution?  How quickly 
do you want to move on a resolution, a sanctions resolution?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that is something that would be 
determined in discussions at the United Nations.

          Q    Mike does the U.S. believe that sanctions would have much 
of an effect on a state as isolated and shut off from the rest of the 
world as North Korea, or would it simply express Western frustration and 
displeasure, but really have no appreciable effect?

          MR. McCURRY:  Well, given the choice of, you know, isolation 
from the world community, or working in some cooperative sense, to 
expand contacts, I think that that choice might be one that would compel 
the North Koreans to honor the commitments that it has made.  But I 
obviously cannot speak for their view of possible sanctions or the 
likelihood of further steps occurring beyond the June l2th -- if that's 
the date that's agreed upon -- the June l2th deadline for their 
decision.

          Q    I have a follow-up on the sanctions question.  Are those 
the only steps being contemplated?  China said it would oppose any 
motion like that in the Security Council.  Have those Chinese 
reservations been overcome, or are there other steps that are being 
considered?

          MR. McCURRY:  Going beyond just saying that we are reviewing 
further steps is all I would want to say at this point .

          Q    Going back to the question of what was disappointing and 
what wasn't, having heard you say that on the issues of principal 
concern, the results were disappointing. Can you give us some idea of 
where the fruit was on issues that may have been of lesser concern but 
nonetheless apparently interesting enough to the U.S. to continue the 
negotiations?

          MR. McCURRY:  I really wouldn't want to do that, Ralph, 
because, you know, they are clearly at a sensitive moment in these 
conversations, and the conversations are going to continue.  So I don't 
think it would be advisable for me to get into a specific tick-tock on 
where we stand.

          Q    In your view, could the negotiations continue while -- 
after the deadline expires, and could the negotiations continue while 
the U.N. proceeds on a separate track, or something, with a sanctions 
resolution?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't want to speculate on that.

          Q    You, a moment ago, referred to expanded contacts if North 
Korea cooperates.  Have the North Koreans specifically been offered 
expanded contacts if they cooperate?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't want to get into that.  I think, to 
the contrary, I think they probably understand some of the -- you know, 
we have made clear some of the problems that exist if they don't honor 
their commitments, but I wouldn't want to get into what the approach 
with them has been.

          Q    Will the same people be involved on the l0th as were 
involved last week in the talks?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'll double-check that.  I would assume so.  I 
assume our side of the talks will continue to be led by Assistant 
Secretary Gallucci, but I'll double-check that.

          Q    Mike, you keep using June l2th, we all keep using June 
l2th, but every time you use it, you throw in some kind of qualifier 
like "if that's the date agreed on."

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm not sure why that is, but I know that we 
always put some caveat on June l2th.

          Q    Could you maybe, for the record, not today but maybe 
tomorrow, sometime, tell us, is June l2th the date, or what is the real 
date?  I mean, there has got to be a real date here by which they are no 
longer members of the NPT.

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that is a question that I will seek 
proper guidance on.  We will take that question.

          Q    I've been trying to get to -- or do you have one more on 
this?

          MR. McCURRY:  One more.

          Q    Can we switch now?  Do you have anything on Israel and 
Jordan, or on the Hamas arrest?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't.

          About all I think I want to say on the Middle East is that the 
co-sponsors to the talks, the Russians and the United States, have 
informed the parties that they would like to see the negotiations resume 
on June l5th, and we are now awaiting their responses.  I do believe 
that the Palestinian delegation has indicated that they will be 
available here in Washington for some pre-consultations perhaps later 
this week.  And beyond that, I don't have anything further.  The status 
of the individual agreements and where things are really is a matter 
that I'll let the parties describe for themselves.  They are in the best 
position to characterize the progress that they have made.

          Q    Do you have, though, any assessment on these Hamas 
arrests, and what effect that might have?

          MR. McCURRY:  No.  I don't want to -- I wouldn't want to get 
into that.

          Q    Can you tell us anything about this report today that 
Jordan and Israel might be close to a peace treaty?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think, as I said, I think I'll let the parties 
speak for themselves on that.  They are in the best position to describe 
where their negotiations stand.

          Q    Have you gotten responses from any of the parties for 
this suggestion of June 15th?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know if we have had specific responses.  
As I've said, we are awaiting their responses.  But, as I say, we do 
expect the Palestinian delegation here later this week.

          Q    On the Israeli Foreign Minister's comments this morning 
and Jordan's response, do you think it is useful for the parties to be 
talking about what might be on the table inside the room outside the 
room?

          MR. McCURRY:  This is a subject where I have learned very well 
it is less useful for me to speculate on what the parties are saying 
from here at this podium.  I think I wouldn't want to characterize the 
status of those negotiations.  I think I will let the parties do the 
talking for themselves.

          Q    Mike, the Secretary is scheduled to meet with key Jewish 
leaders, American Jewish leaders, today.  What's the purpose of that 
meeting?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wasn't aware of that.  I'll get a readout on 
that meeting for you.

          Q    On that subject, the Jewish leaders who are seeing him 
this afternoon, put out a press release last week saying that the 
Government of Kuwait has agreed to drop its secondary and tertiary 
boycott against Israel.

          Do you have confirmation of that from the Kuwaitis?

          MR. McCURRY:  I did a little bit of checking on that last week 
as a result of that press release.  I don't know that we've got anything 
new to report on that.  That was something that had been -- something 
that we fully expected.  I think, as you know, it's something that 
Secretary Christopher had raised on his trip in the region, on his first 
trip as Secretary, and I believe that the indication to us was that 
there was a paperwork process involved that was coming to a conclusion, 
and that Kuwait was taking that step.  But I'll be delighted to get some 
additional information beyond --

          Q    In checking, could you also include an observation 
whether this is a big deal or a little deal or the inconsequential.

          MR. McCURRY:  Obviously, it is something the Secretary had 
raised, and so it does have the significance attached to it, but we will 
check further.

          A question here.

          Q    Mike, back briefly to the Palestinian pre-consultations, 
you say they have indicated they will be here later this week, but Hanan 
Ashrawi, Abdel-Shafi and Faisal Husseini are in Amman now saying they 
are deciding whether they are going to come this week or not.  Is there 
a disconnect there?

          MR. McCURRY:  No.  As I said, we do expect them to be coming 
for consultations later this week.  On Mr. Husseini, we don't know when 
Mr. Husseini will be joining them.

          Q    If I may?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes.

          Q    Could you give us an update on safe haven resolution 
negotiations, where they stand, and when we will be expected to see 
something pass at the Security Council?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes.

          Q    Is it possible that Somalia is once again getting in the 
way of Bosnia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think we have covered Somalia at some great 
length.  Let me go through some of the specific aspects of U.N. Security 
Council Resolution 836 which I think, as you know, passed over the 
weekend.

          One, it extends the mandate of UNPROFOR to enable it to deter 
attacks against the safe areas, to monitor the cease-fire, to promote 
withdrawal of military forces other than those of the Government of 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, and to occupy key points on the ground -- just 
walking through the text of the resolution itself.

          The resolution also requests the Secretary General to make an 
assessment within seven days, if possible, on the configuration of the 
safe havens -- or safe areas enforcement regime.  The Council will then 
review and approve the Secretary General's report, once that assessment 
has been made by the Secretary General.

          So, because of that, it would be premature now to speculate on 
the number of troops necessary to carry out the mandate outlined in 
Resolution 836, but the United States will certainly use its diplomatic 
influence to encourage U.N. member states to contribute to the safe 
areas effort, as appropriate.

          I think, as you all know, the United States is committed to 
using its air power to protect UNPROFOR troops in the safe areas should 
they come under attack and request assistance, and will be working 
urgently with the parties to fulfill both the requirements of the U.N. 
Security Council Resolution and the Joint Action Plan that the parties 
signed here at the Department on May 22nd.

          Q    The question that arises is that the United Nations was 
having problems finding troops for safe havens and now they are looking 
for troops for something -- some forces for Somalia, and I wonder 
whether the two efforts might help retard the enforcement of safe havens 
or Somalia, for that matter?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm sure that it would be the position of the 
United States that implementing those resolutions should be done as 
quickly as possible, appropriate with the guidelines set out by the 
Secretary General.  And maybe for exactly that reason, the Secretary 
General has been looking for an opportunity to discuss the overall role 
of U.N. peacekeeping forces.

          Q    Wouldn't it be easier to get troops for Bosnia, since the 
United States doesn't want to put any ground troops there, for the 
United States to offer the troops for Somalia where they have been and 
where they are committed to that kind of humanitarian aid?

          MR. McCURRY:  That's a speculative offer that might strike 
some as a good idea, but it wouldn't be one that I'd want to comment on 
here.

          Q    The Secretary said a few days ago that a decision would 
be made within a few days on peacekeepers to Macedonia and more civilian 
human rights observers to Kosovo.  Has that decision been made?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm not sure that the decision has been made.  I 
think this is, you know, implementing the provisions, specific 
provisions, of the Joint Action Plan is something that we clearly will 
be dealing with as we get ready to go on the trip that the Secretary 
leaves on tomorrow.

          It is almost certain that Bosnia will be a subject, among 
others, that will be raised at the European Community meetings in 
Luxembourg, and at the NAC and NACC sessions in Athens.

          It won't be the only subject raised.  Indeed, there is a large 
agenda of things that I think they will want to discuss at these 
regularly scheduled ministerial meetings, but I think that the nature of 
the cooperative effort, both to implement the Joint Action Plan and the 
U.N. Security Council Resolution that was just passed, is something that 
will very likely be on the agenda this coming week.

          Q    So, is the Administration once again going to tell the 
Europeans what its plans are to do -- to send Americans, say, in this 
case, to Macedonia before it tells Americans.  It sounds to me as if you 
have the decision and you are taking it to the Europeans.  Is the 
Administration going to send peacekeepers to Macedonia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think we made pretty clear what our 
commitments were when we publicly signed that May 22nd Joint Action 
Plan, and those questions are addressed in some fashion in those 
documents.

          Q    But you won't say today what you intend to do with this?

          MR. McCURRY:  We intend to work and we intend to contribute to 
those efforts.  But you are asking, I think, about have we precisely 
decided on numbers and places and deployment dates and things like that, 
and I'm not certain that any of that has been decided.  I think that is 
something that we are in the process now of implementing, both the U.N. 
Security Council Resolution and the Joint Action Plan.

          Q    One more point, if I can, which is, among other things we 
don't have diplomatic recognition of Macedonia.  I'm not quite sure how 
you send peacekeepers in to defend a country, or help protect a country 
that we don't recognize.  Does the U.S. intend to recognize Macedonia, 
prepared to recognize Macedonia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think if I referred back to the text of the 
Joint Action Plan, I think it said very specifically that there would be 
deployment of monitors.  It would be done in connection with close 
consultations with Skopje and with the government.

          Q    Mike, going back to 864, I guess it is -- 836, I'm sorry, 
the recent resolution.  You referred, in your comments just now, to the 
use of U.S. air power to protect U.N. forces on the ground there.  I 
don't think the resolution uses that phrase.

          Is there another division of labor coming up here that we see 
the U.S. getting ready to engage in -- that is, the U.S. telling others 
to engage in the protection of Muslims in the so-called safe havens 
while the U.S. engages in the protection of UNPROFOR forces in the so-
called safe havens?

          MR. McCURRY:  Ralph, I think it's very clear if you walk 
through the provisions as they are discussed in the U.N. Security 
Council resolution.  They track very carefully and closely some of the 
things that were stipulated in that Joint Action Plan signed by the five 
nations here on May 22.  I think that the discussion of cooperative 
roles in implementing that plan and now the Security Council resolution 
have been discussed here many, many times.  I don't think there's any 
new thinking or any change of view on that.  I think that we're dealing 
with the same question.  It's not somehow a new question because there's 
a U.N. resolution as opposed to statements made by five countries 
earlier.

          Q    Is that the kind of division of labor you're talking 
about now, even in the air?  Earlier, the division of labor had been 
referred to air versus ground.  Now, are you talking about division of 
air responsibilities?

          MR. McCURRY:  No, I didn't mean to suggest that.  What we've 
said, as far as sorting out the roles of people who are involved in this 
effort, we've been pretty clear on that.

          You've heard from the Secretary and others, that dividing up 
the appropriate roles for individual nations to play is something that 
we will proceed to do with some great urgency in a sense of how 
immediate the need is.  But I think we also see we've been discussing 
this morning the unfortunate situation in Somalia.  We know that the 
United States has made commitments where it plays a different kind of 
role in that situation.

          I think what the Secretary has indicated to date is that we 
will play an appropriate role consistent with what expertise and 
materials we can bring to the situation.

          Q    Can you clarify something, Mike?  It's not in the 
resolution and it certainly wasn't in the Joint Action Statement, but 
there were some people interpreting the resolution in a way which 
suggested that in order to send troops to the safe havens UNPROFOR would 
have to get a safe passage, permission, if you will, from the Bosnian 
Serbs.  Is that, indeed, the intention?  And if it is, isn't somewhat 
absurd?

          MR. McCURRY:  You're clearly talking about the way individual 
people, as they discussed and debated the U.N. Security Council 
resolution, addressed the provisions of that resolution.  And whether or 
not they were speaking in favor or against, I don't know.

          Q    It wasn't so much speaking -- no, as I understand it, 
people were saying we would not be able to send these U.N. troops into 
specific safe havens unless they were given safe passage by the Bosnian 
Serbs.

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't want to interpret exactly what the 
requirements are.  I think that -- this resolution has just passed and 
we just heard today some comments from the Bosnian Government on how 
they would regard the implementation of the resolution.  I wouldn't want 
to discuss now or yet the specific ways in which the resolution might be 
implemented or how it would be viewed by the parties that are in 
conflict.

          Q    But the general proposition --

          MR. McCURRY:  The goal of the resolution and the overall 
thrust of what this effort is aimed at is quite clear, which is to deter 
those who are currently fighting to stop the killing, to contain the 
conflict, and to increase the pressure on precisely those who might 
otherwise try to thwart both the safe areas forces and the provision of 
humanitarian aid to the safe areas to get them to stop.

          Q    I guess my question, really, is, that as a general 
proposal, does the implementation of this resolution require the 
cooperation of the Bosnian Serbs?  And if it does, what is it's meaning?

          MR. McCURRY:  I can't imagine that it does, but I will be 
happy to check on that further.

          Q    The Russian Government told Lord Owen that it was not 
ready to provide troops to be sent to the so-called safe havens.  Is it 
the type of cooperation that the U.S. Government expects from a country 
which is financially supported, helped by the U.S. Government?

          MR. McCURRY:  I am not aware specifically of that diplomatic 
exchange, and I wouldn't want to comment on what the Russians may have 
told another nation.

          Q    Mike, on Macedonia, did you say, yes, the U.S. has 
decided it is going to put peacekeeping forces into Macedonia; it just 
hasn't yet determined the exact location and the exact numbers?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that we indicated, in connection with 
the Joint Action Plan, that we were prepared to take certain steps.  It 
wasn't necessarily -- in the case of Macedonia -- not necessarily the 
deployment of ground troops. There were other things that might be done 
in connection with the provisions of the Joint Action Plan that related 
to Macedonia.

          Q    So you're not telling us today that --

          MR. McCURRY:  No, I'm not saying that we have made a decision 
one way or another on whether or not we would commit additional troops 
or monitors.

          Q    But you are saying that you're going to tell the 
Europeans during this current trip what we've decided?

          MR. McCURRY:  No.  I want to be real clear on that because I 
may have left a misimpression.  That's something that, clearly, we'll be 
discussing -- the best means of implementing that particular provision 
of the Joint Action Plan, when we deal with these conversations later in 
the week.

          Q    Do you expect a decision after consultations with the 
Europeans?

          MR. McCURRY:  Say again?

          Q    Do you expect a decision after consultation with the 
Europeans on this question?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think a decision, in a sense, has already been 
made.  We've already decided.  We're implementing now.  We're at that --

          Q    A decision on implementation?

          MR. McCURRY:  On how best to implement.  You're saying, when 
will we be able to say how we --

          Q    Well, harking back to Terry's question, when are you 
going to tell the American people what you decide in that room?

          MR. McCURRY:  As soon as we're in a position to be able to say 
publicly what we'll do to implement the plan; as soon as we can provide 
factual information.

          Q    Can you give us an idea of the Secretary's bilateral 
meetings during the trip?  Is he seeing Kozyrev, the Ukrainian Prime 
Minister, and --

          MR. McCURRY:  I think there are plans for several bilateral 
meetings -- with the Austrians, I believe we're planning one with 
Kozyrev.

          What I'd like to do is work later on today to give you a 
little better sense of the schedule.  We've only laid out, in some 
sense, the major pieces at this point, and we're going to work to put 
out a somewhat more detailed schedule that should be available later on 
today.

          Q    Could I get a long-awaited question in?  Can you give us 
an assessment of the talks in Kiev on Ukrainian retention of nuclear 
weapons?

          MR. McCURRY:  Unfortunately, I have to defer, I think, to our 
friends over at the Pentagon, only because the Secretary of Defense has 
just concluded remarks -- concluded talks there with Ambassador Talbott, 
and I believe that they may have even held some type of press 
availability or might have made some press comments shortly before my 
coming out here.  So I think that they clearly were going to provide 
readout on the status of their talks.

          Our views haven't changed.  We're looking at ways to achieve 
the common goals that we have to deal with the question of the nuclear 
warheads on Ukrainian territory.  That is a subject that Secretary Aspin 
was working on with Ambassador Talbott throughout the weekend.

          Q    (Inaudible) negotiations.  Can you tell us about the 
policy?  You said your views have not changed, but the U.S. view was 
that those warheads ought to be dismantled on Russian territory.  Have 
U.S. views changed on that issue?  Can the warheads be dismantled 
anyplace other than Russia?

          MR. McCURRY:  That's a question that goes into how you would 
actually implement something that would be agreed upon in talks that I 
think are still underway.  So I really wouldn't want to speculate at 
this point on how you would go about doing that.

          Q    The previously-held U.S. view is under review or up for 
grabs at the moment.  It's not constant at the moment?

          MR. McCURRY:  Since there are conversations going on -- have 
been going on today -- by a member of the Cabinet, and Ambassador 
Talbott from this Department, I think I best steer clear of any 
commentary on where they are at this moment.  But I do know that they 
are planning to try to say some more about it.

          Q    A part of the proposal that the Secretary took with him 
was to put the nuclear warheads for a temporary period under 
international control.  Can you tell us anything more about that?

          MR. McCURRY:  I want to hold off in saying anything more.  Let 
me just kind of go through some of what I do have here.  There is, I 
think as you know, a Memorandum of Understanding which the Russians and 
we have been working on which will implement the policy when it's 
signed.  Beyond that, I think, because they're -- again, as I say -- 
having conversations on it with the Secretary of Defense, I really 
should defer to them until they can give you a proper readout on where 
those conversations went, what the conversations with Minister Grachev 
led people to feel over the weekend.

          Q    Mike, for your first briefing, this has all gone all too 
smoothly.  (Laughter)  We'd like you not to get away quite so easily, so 
I'd like to ask you about a story which just ran on the wires right 
before the briefing today.

          It's a story from Swaziland:  A tribal chief has banned women 
from wearing trousers in his district just outside the capital, saying 
that Swazi tradition requires women to wear dresses.  He was quoted as 
saying, "It was shameful for women to wear trousers in public."

          In view of the Secretary's upcoming trip to the Human Rights 
Conference, does the U.S. have a reaction to this?  And does the U.S. 
consider the wearing of trousers by women to be a fundamental human 
right?

          MR. McCURRY:  Attire and the appropriate attire, as you will 
soon discover from the ties I wear before you at this podium, is 
something that the Department would probably best not take any official 
position upon.

          I leave it up to you, however, to comment about the attire of 
those officials who parade before you at this podium from time to time.

          I promised you one more.

          Q    One question.  Yes, please.  Have you any comment on the 
uprising in Azerbaijan and the rebel movement there which has seized the 
second largest town in the area?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't.  I was hoping you were going to ask me 
about Guatemala.

          Q    I wanted to.

          MR. McCURRY:  You won't mind taking one last question. I'm 
having so much fun out here on my first day.  I would have begged the 
question -- I want to alert you to something that is important to say.  
I think as many of you know, Deputy Secretary Clifton Wharton has been 
attending the OAS Ministerial sessions that have been going on Managua 
over the last several days.  At the conclusion of those meetings, he 
will be going to Guatemala, I believe, tomorrow to meet with the newly 
installed President, de Leon Carpio.

          Among other things -- I will leave it to Deputy Secretary 
Wharton to discuss the U.S. view of the events there of recent days -- 
but one thing that the Deputy Secretary will be indicating and 
announcing later today is that we're resuming the full range of our 
programs that were interrupted on May 25 when the constitutional crisis 
began.  I wanted to alert you to that.

          Q    Thank you.

          (Press briefing concluded at 1:05 p.m.) 
(###)

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