931008 Daily Press Briefing  Return to: Index of 1993 Daily Briefings || Electronic Research Collections Index || ERC Homepage

Note: This Electronic Research Collection (ERC) is an archive site. For the most current information, please visit the US State Department homepage.
Friday, October 8, 1993

                            BRIEFER:  Michael McCurry

Subject                                        Page

Mission of UN/US Military Personnel/Deployment .1-3,6,14
--  Police Training/Engineering Projects .......1-2,6-7
--  Security ...................................2-3,6-7,14
--  Arrival/Departure Date .....................3
US Interests ...................................3
US Training Aristide's Security Detail  ........4-5
Implementing the Governor's Island Accord ......5-8

Elections ......................................8-9
Relations with US ...............................9

US/UN Efforts at Political Settlement ..........9-13
--  Participation by Aideed/Aideed's Clan ......12-13
Departure Date for US Troops ...................9-10
Mission of Ambassador Oakley ...................10-11

Bilateral Talks in Washington/Next Round .......14

Report of Doomsday Machine .....................15

Prospects for Lifting US Travel Ban ............15
Reported Trip by Wayne Smith Group .............15-16
Interagency Meeting re:  Contingency Plan for
  Exodus .......................................16

Election Preparations ..........................16


                       DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                       DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

                                              DPC #137

               FRIDAY, OCTOBER 8, 1993, 1:17 P. M.

         MR. McCURRY:  Good afternoon, everybody.  I apologize for being 
tardy.  I don't have any prepared statements.  I'll take any questions 
you might have.

          Q    Do you have anything about the pending deployment of 
troops to Haiti and whether or not there is any disagreement between 
State and Pentagon on this question?

          MR. McCURRY:  Everyone is shaking their heads "no" already.  I 
guess you already have the answer.

          I think that there is always an interagency process that 
reviews questions like that, and I think maybe there was a report today 
that exaggerated some of the questions that we worked through in the 
interagency process.

          The President's policy is very clear.  We support the 
restoration of democracy in Haiti.  To that end, we have worked 
aggressively to help shape the Governor's Island agreement and to make 
it work, and we're providing economic assistance to help the Haitian 
economy.  We're committed to participate with some military personnel in 
the U.N. mission in Haiti.

          Our military personnel are part of a multinational mission, as 
you know.  There are some advance -- members of the advance party 
associated with that mission that have already arrived in Haiti.  There 
are other personnel ready to be deployed, and the deployment will 

          Now, obviously, as we go along, we address security 
conditions.  We address logistical questions that arise, we evaluate the 
situation on the ground.  But my understanding, the latest I've heard, 
is that the deployment is going forward, and that they will be in place 
to conduct the work that they will be doing.

          Now, let's review the work they will be doing, because I think 
that's very important.  I think, as some of you know, there are 
approximately 300 military engineers from the United  States and from 
Canada that will perform a variety of humanitarian and civic action-
related projects.  They're going to be building roads, renovating 
clinics and schools.  There will be about 100 military trainers who will 
provide some instruction to the Haitian army in basic non-combat skills 
-- organization, physical training, things like that -- and then there 
will be about another 200 support personnel.

          So while this is a mission somewhat limited in its scope and 
designed to be oriented towards engineering projects and assisting with 
the implementation of things called for in the Governor's Island 
accords, it is important that the conditions be safe for any U.S. 
personnel stationed abroad, and those questions we will obviously work 
at together with the Pentagon and others.

          Q    Do you feel it is safe now for this deployment to go 

          MR. McCURRY:  They will evaluate that situation as they go 
along.  I think we have every confidence that the security of personnel 
stationed in Haiti will be assured.

          Q    So the deployment mission has been delayed while you work 
out security arrangements?

          MR. McCURRY:  No.  I'm not sure it's been delayed.  I think 
the Pentagon can tell you more about what their deployment schedule is.  
My understanding is that the bulk of the personnel is still scheduled to 
arrive on Monday.  Those personnel are, I think, either in Puerto Rico 
or underway now.  But, as I say, the deployment is in progress right 
now, and it's probably best to check at the Pentagon on exactly what the 
schedule is as they complete the deployment.

          Q    But when they arrive, will they go ashore, because that 
question has been raised.

          MR. McCURRY:  They're going to go ashore.  I mean, arriving -- 
it would be awfully hard to carry out the engineering work that they are 
tasked with if they are still on board a ship.

          Q    How will they be protected?

          MR. McCURRY:  How will they be protected?  I don't want to get 
into how they will be protected, but we're confident that they will be 
secure, in that they will be well protected.

          Q    Did the Pentagon raise a lot of questions about the 
operation -- raise them -- ask Secretary Christopher to explain a series 
of questions, and was the effect, if not the purpose, to delay the 

          MR. McCURRY:  I doubt very much that there was any attempt to 
use questions about logistics or how the deployment -- what the status 
of the Governor's Island accord is.  I wouldn't want to speculate on 
motives, but I don't think that that's the way you would go about 
delaying it, nor do I think that was the intent here.  I think there 
were very legitimate questions on logistics, the status of implementing 
the Governor's Island accord and things called for in the Governor's 
Island accord, and, of course, we work these things out.

          Q    Mike, I'll lay down the three big questions.  Why don't 
you answer them, if you would.

          What's our strategic interest in Haiti?  What is the military 
objective there?  And when is the exit date?

          MR. McCURRY:  The exit date, as you know -- I'll take them in 
reverse order -- the exit date is six months.  The deployment is for six 
months, and I think you heard recently Prime Minister Malval recommit 
himself to that six-month deadline and indicate that he thought that was 
a satisfactory deployment.

          The second question, going backwards.

          Q    The military mission.

          MR. McCURRY:  The military mission, I think, has been very 
well defined.  It's in support of the Governor's Island accord, and it's 
to carry out those engineering projects and training that this force is 
tasked with.  Then the first is the interest.  We have very strong 
interests, as you know, in the successful restoration of democracy in 
Haiti, not the least of which is to avert another exodus of boat people 
coming to our shores.  I think that's a very clear interest that is in 
our neighborhood and is very well-defined and understood.

          Q    Mike, could I ask you whether any American troops would 
be sent down with the sole purpose of protecting the engineers and the 
trainers that are going?

          MR. McCURRY:  The engineers and trainers that will be carrying 
out their work -- my understanding is they'll carry side arms for their 
personal protection.  They'll be doing training and engineering 
projects, but that's not a combat force, nor is it a force equipped to 
respond to any combat-like situations.

          Now, will there be force in the region that could carry out 
that mission?  I really would prefer not to answer that.  I think the 
Pentagon would be better equipped to answer that question for you.

          But, again, I would say we are certainly going to take steps 
to assure the safety of our personnel in Haiti.

          Q    Mike, do you confirm that the United States Government is 
training and is going to provide bodyguards for President Aristide?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes, at the request of President Aristide, the 
Department has got some security training going on for approximately 60 
Haitian officials who will be responsible for the protection of 
President Aristide upon his return to Haiti.  We customarily have these 
security details working with local police, and of course part of the 
Governor's Island accord calls for the creation and establishment of an 
independent civilian police force.

          If you're interested, the officials that are getting this 
training, are being trained in protective security, and that includes 
classroom instruction on protective security operations, firearms 
training and counter-terrorist driving techniques.  This is training 
being conducted by the Bureau of Diplomatic Security here at the State 

          Q    How long is this going on?

          MR. McCURRY:  I do have an answer to that -- oh, I do have an 
answer to that.  The first group of Haitians began a two-week course 
September 27.  We've got a second and a third group that will be 
receiving additional training in the coming weeks.

          Q    That's here?  Is that in Washington?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm not sure exactly where they train.  I think 
they train at various facilities that we've got in various places.

          Q    In the United States?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  Here in the United States.

          Q    How long is the average training course?  Is it two 

          MR. McCURRY:  Two-week course.

          Q    Oh, two-week.  That's it?

          MR. McCURRY:  It's described as a two-week course of training.

          Q    Will the instructors speak French?  I know the people 
going down there -- especially the bodyguards.

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't know the answer to that, since they are 
French-speaking, a lot of the personnel associated with the 
multinational force are French-speaking.  

          Q    That's why I asked.

          MR. McCURRY:  I think these probably are French-speaking, but 
I don't know that for a fact.

          Q    Because I know the selection is to look for French-
speaking -- multilateral.

          MR. McCURRY:  I think they've been looking mostly in French-
speaking nations for some of the -- to raise the members of this 
multinational force.

          Q    Well, how about questions like control and access to the 
airport and things like this, resupply routes?  Have all of these been 
-- I mean, these are supposedly the questions that were raised on 
Saturday.  Have they been taken care of yet?

          MR. McCURRY:  They are working through -- those questions that 
have been raised, they are working through.  There were questions about 
status-of-forces agreement, questions about rule of engagement.  My 
understanding is that they are successfully working through all the 
questions that have been raised, as they properly would be in 
interagency discussions of this nature.

          Q    Has it been resolved?  Have those issues been resolved, 
or are they in the process of continuing to work on those issues?

          MR. McCURRY:  My understanding is that most, if not all, the 
arrangements for the deployment have been taken care of.  But I can 
double-check and be absolutely sure that there aren't some questions 
that they're still working on resolving.  I think there probably are -- 
you know, as you go into any deployment like this, you continue to 
review how the mission will unfold.  I'm certain right up to the final 
deployment there will be questions that will be raised and answered.

          Q    Can you give us your assessment -- the U.S. Government's 
assessment of the degree and how well that the Governor's Island accord 
is being implemented on specific things like, do you regard Aristide's 
proclamation of amnesty as sufficient?  Do you regard the military 
leaders who are supposed to resign and leave the country as moving in 
good faith towards doing that?  Things like this.

          MR. McCURRY:  There are specific things called for in the 
Governor's Island accord -- requirements placed on all the parties.  It 
is not incorrect to say that there is some testing of wills going on at 
this moment -- that's quite clear -- but again we call upon all of the 
parties to live up to the agreements that they have made in the 
Governor's Island accord, and we look forward to the successful 
restoration of democracy in Haiti.

          We do believe that the people of Haiti themselves deserve the 
full implementation of this agreement, and we will continue to press 
upon the parties the importance of meeting all the commitments and 
obligations they have under the Governor's Island accords.

          Q    If we can return again to the issue of security for the 
American forces.  They are carrying side arms.  Understanding that the 
Pentagon is handling a lot of the heavy lifting on this, it's still not 
clear to me how American forces would not be vulnerable to anybody with 
a gun.  How are they going to be protected?

          MR. McCURRY:  I would not suggest that there is not risk 
associated with this deployment, but there are people who are there now, 
people who have been there already.  They are not encountering 
difficulty.  We will obviously continue to assess the nature of any 
risks that might exist for U.S. troops deployed and make sure that we 
are completely satisfied that we are in a position to protect our 

          Q    Is one of the unanswered questions about this mission is 
the final total number of Americans who will be sent?

          MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of.  I think I outlined it 
for you -- about 300 engineers, 200 -- I had that wrong.  About 300 
engineers, about 100 military trainers, about another 200 support 
personnel -- a total of around 600.

          Q    Would this training mission have the Haitian military and 
police units agreed beyond what it says in the Governor's Island accord?  
Do you have specific agreements for specific units to submit to 
training, and, if so, who did you make the agreements with?

          MR. McCURRY:  Have certain police elements of certain police 
forces currently there under certain commands agreed to participate in 

          Q    Yes.

          MR. McCURRY:  That I can't answer.  I don't know the answer to 
that.  I do know that part of this, not associated with the U.S. 
presence, but part of the multinational presence in Haiti, is police 
monitors, themselves, who will actually be in a position to monitor 
elements of the police force itself. Now, they have agreed --

          Q    They've received no cooperation at all from local 
authorities, according to the U.N. and the OAS.

          MR. McCURRY:  The U.N. and the OAS do have human rights 
observers and also monitors that are associated with this mission.  They 
will report as to the success of their mission.

          Q    You said several aspects of this story in today's paper 
were exaggerated.  Could you be more specific as to what was 

          MR. McCURRY:  Exaggerated.  I think that's making a mountain 
out of a mole hill.  You know, there are always in policy-making 
discussions within the United States Government questions that different 
agencies raise as they discuss policy.  That's a fact of life within the 
interagency process.

          I think The New York Times chose to make that a page one 
story.  They can.  That's their right.

          Q    Mike, shouldn't these key questions have been raised a 
little sooner than two days before the troops were supposed to go?

          MR. McCURRY:  Well, I think they weren't raised two days 
before they were scheduled to go.  I think there were issues that 
certainly needed to be addressed by -- a Cabinet member felt needed to 
be addressed, and they were addressed.

          Q    Dante Caputo has said that Colonel Francois -- he's named 
him -- is responsible for the continuing terror in Haiti.  What is the 
U.S. reaction to that?

          MR. McCURRY:  We have not suggested any one individual is 
responsible, but we have called upon those parties in Haiti to be 
responsible for the security situation in Haiti itself as this 
transformation takes place.  We have made it very clear privately to 
whom we direct those comments.

          Q    Latest reports would indicate that the military, Cedras 
and company, have not accepted the amnesty terms offered by Aristide.

          MR. McCURRY:  The amnesty terms were offered on Sunday, and 
again these are aspects of the Governor's Island accords that are 
currently pressed and looked into with the parties themselves.

          Q    Mike, can we ask about Somalia a little bit?

          Q    Wait a minute.  I want to finish up with this.  At the 
risk of making the question a little bit editorial, you say you've made 
this very clear privately.  We've been making things very clear 
privately down there for two years now, and what we get all the time is 
a public acknowledgment that, yes, we will do as we're being asked.  
But, if you just read the wire copy or headlines out of Haiti this past 
week, it's very  clear that you do not seem well on track to fill an 
October 15 transition that will be in any way smooth.  What are we going 
to do in that case?

          MR. McCURRY:  It's both an editorial question and a 
hypothetical question.  But, as I say, we have been -- it is clear that 
there are those who would like to test the resolve of the international 
community at this moment as to our willingness to support and back the 
Governor's Island accord.  And, if we care about the restoration of 
democracy in Haiti, those who are trying to thwart this agreement need 
to be overcome and the agreement itself needs to be implemented.

          Q    Mike, can you name names?

          MR. McCURRY:  Read the wire copy that John just referred to.

          Q    Yes.  But, I mean, that's the answer we've been getting 
for over two years.

          MR. McCURRY:  Look, there is a schedule for the implementation 
of these accords.  The parties know what their responsibilities are 
under these accords, and you're right, we'll have to see if they're met.  
But we are certainly doing everything on our part of this accord to 
ensure that the Governor's Island accord can be implemented 

          Q    Mike, can we leave Haiti?

          MR. McCURRY:  Any more on Haiti?  Go ahead.

          Q    Anything on the elections in Pakistan?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't have a lot, because I think my latest 
check didn't indicate that they had had a result that gave us a lot to 
talk about at this point.  It appears that no party has a majority of 
seats in the National Assembly.  We understand final results probably 
won't be available until October 10, and then, of course, they then will 
form the new National Assembly some time after October 15.  

          We look forward to working with the new government once it's 
formed.  It does appear to us that the voting itself was orderly.  There 
were no reported incidents of violence.  

          Q    Were there any State Department observers who went to --

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm not sure that there were State Department 
observers that went.  The Government of Pakistan invited a number of 
international groups to observe the elections, and we are looking 
forward to receiving the reports of those groups that were there to 
witness the voting.

          Q    Overall, do you feel elections were free and fair?

          MR. McCURRY:  Were the elections free and fair?

          Q    Yes.

          MR. McCURRY:  That's one thing we will assess as we look at 
the reports of these groups that didn't actually monitor the voting 

          Q    Mike, just one quick follow-up.  Generally what's the 
prognosis for U.S.-Pakistan relations?

          MR. McCURRY:  As I say, we look forward to working with a 
government.  We continue to have discussions bilaterally with the 
Pakistani Government on a range of issues of concern, both proliferation 
issues and others, in the region; and I think the prospect for good 
relations with the new government is certainly available.

          Q    But there's going to be likely another unhealthy 

          MR. McCURRY:  We can't speculate on the nature of the 
coalition because it's entirely unclear which side at this point is in a 
better position to form a government.

          Q    Somalia?  Do you have an idea where Oakley will go 
besides Addis Ababa?  And, more to the point, what is it about this 
diplomatic initiative, the multifaceted diplomatic initiative, that 
gives some hope, whereas previous efforts failed?

          MR. McCURRY:  Well, I reject that premise of the question.

          Q    I mean, the African-led --

          MR. McCURRY:  I mean, that's not a fair characterization.  
There was an Addis Ababa agreement back in March by the 15 clans.  There 
have been interests on the part of governments in the region to assist 
in helping the Somalis constitute some type of governing authority; and 
our sense is that that political track, those efforts, need to be 
addressed again and the whole mission of UNOSOM needs to be refocused on 
that political track because it's ultimately the one that will give the 
Somali people the best possible chance of taking over responsibility for 
their own affairs as the United States and other participants in UNOSOM 

          Q    I was wondering if the projected departure of American 
troops is an incentive in the U.S. view for these folks to pursue a 
political settlement.

          MR. McCURRY:  For the Somali people who wish to live in 
democracy and see their nation prosper and turn away from  the violence, 
the chaos and the famine of recent years, they now know that they have 
to make progress on taking responsibility for setting up institutions of 
government during this six-month period.  That does create an incentive 
for them to do it.

          Now, others I know would suggest that also gives an incentive 
to those who would like to thwart that process to just ride it out.  
Ultimately the success or failure of the effort of the Somali people to 
create a government that can sustain the people of Somalia will depend 
on who triumphs.  Is it going to be the thugs in the clans?  Or will it 
be the vast majority of people in Somalia who wish to see a democratic 

          Q    Mike, specifically what are Oakley's marching orders?

          MR. McCURRY:  His marching orders specifically begin with the 
exact -- I don't have the exact wording, but the charge given to him by 
the President and by the Secretary in their remarks that you saw 
reflected yesterday: to go to Addis Ababa to begin to meet with leaders 
in the region, including the President of Ethiopia, to investigate the 
possibility of bringing a regional grouping together that could be 
supportive of the effort to establish a political dialogue in Somalia 
that would lead to the formation of a governing authority -- some type 
of transition council, for example.

          That's what's called for in the Addis Ababa agreements of 
March 27, and we think that's a good place to begin as Ambassador Oakley 
begins that form of dialogue.  Clearly there are many others in the 
region that can be supportive.  We believe Kenya, Djibouti, Eritrea, 
Egypt, among others, indeed involving, as you heard the Secretary say, 
the Organization of African Unity will be one of the things that we 
attempt to do.  And all of those efforts will be things that Ambassador 
Oakley will pursue as he arrives first in Addis Ababa.

          But to get to your question, Barry, I don't have an itinerary 
for him beyond that.  I think he's going to begin -- I think he's 
already arrived.  I think he'll begin this work, and he'll see how 
things develop.

          Q    Just to follow that up, this morning the Foreign Minister 
of Ethiopia was at CSIS; and they are now exploring the region with an 
idea that there can be no military solution but there can be a political 
solution only after disarmament.  And they've come up with the idea of 
making future food shipments contingent on the various clans giving up 
their arms supplies.  Is that something that the United States has 
signed off on?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wouldn't say that we have signed off on that.  
Those are the kinds of ideas that are now going to be  explored in the 
context of opening up the political dialogue that we will pursue through 
Ambassador Oakley, and I should also say through others.  I mean, 
clearly there will be others that will continue to work on the policy 
and on the political track as we move ahead.

          But those are the types of ideas -- frankly, those are the 
ideas that we've needed to have in play and in mix that have been sort 
of on the side, as the focus has been more intensely on the military 
mission.  That's exactly one reason why we now wish to refocus the 
mission on the political track, so ideas like that that might prove 
useful in bringing an end to the violence can be explored and can be 

          Q    Mike, to what extend would it be Ambassador Oakley's 
mission to secure the release of the captured American?

          MR. McCURRY:  He doesn't go over with that immediately in his 
portfolio.  We clearly are going to be in dialogue with people who 
themselves have dialogue with the various clans and factional leaders 
within Somalia.  There are several channels that will be pursued.  In 
fact, indeed, I would say the United States is doing everything possible 
to secure the release of those who might be detained.  But I, for many, 
many different reasons, just cannot get into a discussion of what might 
happen when.

          Q    To follow that up, what's the American policy now on 
negotiating with hostage-holders?

          MR. McCURRY:  The United States does not negotiate for the 
release of hostages.

          Q    Mike, just to be clear on this point:  On March 3l the 
withdrawal happens even if one or more Americans are still being held by 
an armed faction in Somalia?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm sorry.  Say again?

          Q    Do we pull out on March 3l even if an American or one or 
more Americans are still being held by armed factions in Somalia?

          MR. McCURRY:  Well, that's not a question that we expect to 
face.  You know, the President has called for the immediate release of 
any of those who are detained, and so "immediate" does not mean March of 
l994.  So the question doesn't arise, I don't think.

          Q    There are people who say we should not pull out if we're 
leaving Americans behind.

          MR. McCURRY:  We're talking about March of l994.  The question 
just doesn't arise, I don't think.

          Q    Mike, do you have anything more on the circumstances 
under which these two bodies were recovered?  Was it the result of some 
sort of mediation or negotiation?

          MR. McCURRY:  I don't, I'm sorry.  I saw that wire report.  I 
was trying to get more information from UNOSOM in Mogadishu.  I 
understand that they are preparing additional information.  It might be 
available later.

          Q    Mike, to get back to the political reconciliation track, 
you mentioned the talks in Addis eight months or so ago.  Aideed 
participated in those talks, was a key participant.  Will the current 
talks Ambassador Oakley is trying to get going will include Aideed?  Do 
we welcome his participation?  Will we allow his participation?

          MR. McCURRY:  At this very moment it's nearly impossible to 
imagine him as a participant in those talks.  There has been nothing 
about his behavior that would suggest that he would be a willing 
participant in these types of negotiations nor anything which suggests 
that he would be a welcome participant, given the violence that he has 
engendered and directed against the U.N. peacekeepers and in some cases 
against his very own people.

          Now, that said, I don't rule out the possibility that elements 
of his clan might in fact want to participate in these discussions.  
That's something that -- we'll have to see how that develops.

          Q    Well, don't you agree that clearly his is a very large 
faction, very powerful; it controls Mogadishu?  So the Americans -- the 
U.S. -- has to deal with him in some form.  You can't just -- or is your 
strategy to isolate him by bringing everybody else on board?

          MR. McCURRY:  I think our strategy is to attempt to bring 
together a dialogue on national reconciliation that will involve, you 
know, all the factions and all the factional groupings.

          Now, that doesn't necessarily mean that General Aideed is the 
type of person who has to participate; but you are correct in suggesting 
that his clan, Habr Gedr, is large enough and influential enough in 
south Mogadishu that it has to be part of the solution.  And I'm just 
not going to speculate on ways in which you might carry out negotiation 
or a discussion that could help involve them.  It's just too early to 
tell at this point.  But those are the kinds of things that need to be 

          Q    But just to follow up, it's correct to say that if his 
clan wants to participate, it's O.K. but not the individual, not Aideed?

          MR. McCURRY:  I'm not, you know, barring anyone from any 
discussion about peaceful reconciliation in Somalia.  That's not our 
intent here.  I'm just saying that at the moment there's nothing about 
the disposition and behavior of General Aideed to suggest that he would 
play a part in any type of discussion like this.

          Q    Could General Aideed participate in the talks without 
fear of arrest?

          MR. McCURRY:  That's a good question.  He faces a U.N. arrest 
warrant, in effect, as a result of U.N. Security Council Resolution 837.  
I'm not aware of any effort to suspend that provision of U.N. Security 
Resolution 837, so he does face an arrest warrant.  He's a fugitive from 
international justice.  But I don't want to --

          Q    (Inaudible)

          MR. McCURRY:  What?

          Q    Well, maybe if they meet in Oslo.  (Laughter)

          MR. McCURRY:  Look, I cannot speculate on what would happen if 
he presented himself in a fashion that suggested that he was willing to 
negotiate and willing to be involved in the type of discussion that 
we're talking about here which would lead to some type of reconciliation 
and some effort to establish a governing authority within Somalia.

          Certainly all I'm saying is pointing out the obvious.  That's 
not his disposition at the moment.

          Q    Are we still actively pursuing him?

          MR. McCURRY:  Are we active?  I think we are --

          Q    With helicopters and the rest of it.  That's the 

          MR. McCURRY:  I think that the mission that the President 
outlined yesterday and the four points he outlined were pretty clear.  I 
heard him discuss continued pressure on those who would attempt to 
disrupt the process of peace and reconciliation; I didn't hear anything 
about hot pursuit of fugitives.


          Q    Mike, another question on Haiti.  Does the U.S., under 
the Governor's Island accord, rule out the use of its armed forces for 
any kind of military enforcement of that pact?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  There's no discussion of a military force 
deployed or used to implement the Governor's Island accords within the 
accords themselves.  This is a peaceful effort to bring about the 
transformation of Haiti and a restoration of democracy.

          Q    Well, would it rule out?  As you know, military 
intervention is a hot word down south.

          MR. McCURRY:  Absolutely.  And that's why that question was 
addressed very carefully and deliberately as it was discussed in New 
York at the time that the parties negotiated the Governor's Island 

          Q    Mike, I have a question on the Middle East.

          MR. McCURRY:  And it's exactly why the deployment of those 
connected to the U.S. personnel, those deployed, are again -- to repeat 
-- engineers, trainers, people who can do logistical and support work.

          Q    A question on the Middle East.  Have formal invitations 
now gone out for the next round of Washington talks?

          MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of, no.

          Q    Well, was one handed over this morning to the Lebanese 
Foreign Minister, for example?

          MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of.  Do you have information 
to the contrary?  I'll check it out.

          Q    No, no.  Everybody keeps talking about October l3.

          MR. McCURRY:  October l3?

          Q    Yes.

          Q    That's in the region.

          MR. McCURRY:  You may be referring to when Chairman Arafat and 
Prime Minister Rabin met recently and established some working groups, 
working committees, that were going to meet to implement the Declaration 
of Principles -- meeting in the region.

          Q    I'm talking about the bilaterals.

          MR. McCURRY:  The bilaterals here?  I'm not aware of any plans 
to have them reconvene here on October l3.

          Q    Mike, just two quick questions.

          MR. McCURRY:  By the way, I do want to point out, although I 
think you probably did see it, in Cairo both Prime Minister Rabin and 
Chairman Arafat did reiterate their desire to participate in discussions 
here in Washington connected to working the peace process that has been 
underway here in Washington.  They did reaffirm that and did reaffirm 
their intent to see delegations, but I'm not aware of any date that has 
been set at this point.

          Q    A different subject?  What is your assessment of that 
report in today's paper about a doomsday machine in Russia?

          MR. McCURRY:  That was interesting.  Look, I'm not in a 
position to comment on Mr. Blair's article or the specifics.  I will say 
that we continue to believe that nuclear weapons in the former Soviet 
Union are under reliable command and control.  And then I think I would 
also add that one of the benefits now of being in a period in which the 
Cold War no longer hovers above us is that we're in a position to talk 
to the Russians about issues like this.

          Q    Well, did it come as a surprise or were you aware of 
something like this?

          MR. McCURRY:  In talking to those who are very familiar with 
this type of subject, I didn't think -- there were some things in this 
story that were not surprising.

          Q    Not surprising?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes.

          Q    Have we talked with him about it?

          Mr. McCURRY:  I'm not aware that we have talked to him about 
it, but I think this is one area in which we can have a fruitful 
dialogue with Russia now.  If there's anything about this article that 
-- I am not aware that this is on anyone's agenda at the moment; but if 
there are aspects of this study by Mr. Blair that should be pursued with 
the Russians, you know, that could conceivably be raised in discussions 
we have directly with the Russians.  But beyond that I really don't have 
any specific comment on the article.

          Q    I'd like a couple of things on Cuba.  

          A hundred seventy-five Americans, led by Wayne Smith, say 
they're going to go to Cuba in violation of the travel ban in their 
effort to see it eliminated.  Is there any discussion at this point of 
changing that travel ban, and will those l75 people be arrested when 
they return?

          MR. McCURRY:  I wasn't aware of this venture on the part of 
this delegation, but I'll see if I can find something about it.

          Q    Do you have a readout at all on the meeting that was 
held, the interagency meeting on Wednesday?

          MR. McCURRY:  Yes, I do on that.  That meeting, I think, was 
related to contingency planning that first was created, I guess, two 
years ago as the United States looked at how to deal with the 
possibility or the contingency of an exodus of people from Cuba similar 
to the Mariel boat lift in l980.  Those plans -- as I say, they were 
initially drawn up two years ago.  I think there was a feeling that it 
was important to take a look at the status of that planning, not because 
there is any immediate prospect of a boat lift but because it's wise to 
take steps to update any type of contingency planning of that nature 
from time to time.  So an interagency group did meet here at the State 
Department, had a good, useful meeting that was described to me as a 
fairly routine planning exercise.

          Q    There's a clipping on Gabon.  They're getting ready to 
have elections ready there in December.  There's been a national 
democratic group going down there to discuss preparation for the 
elections.  There's been some irregularities -- shutting down newspapers 
and stuff.  Do you have --

          MR. McCURRY:  I'd be happy to take your question.

          Q    Thanks.

          MR. McCURRY:  You're welcome.

          (The briefing concluded at l:54 p.m.)


To the top of this page