931110 Daily Press Briefing  Return to: Index of 1993 Daily Briefings || Electronic Research Collections Index || ERC Homepage

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                                   BRIEFER:  Michael McCurry

Subject                                                  Page

Bus Crash in U.K., American Deaths .............         1
Situation in Yemen, U.S. Concern ...............         2
People at Risk in former Yugoslavia, U.S. Relief         3-4,8 

Bosnian-Serb Restrictions on Winterization 
  Relief Deliveries to Safe Areas ..............         4-5
Strangulation of Sarajevo; Definition; NATO
  Resolution Implementation ....................         5-9
Reopening Tuzla Airport ........................         7-8

IG Report on Files Retrieval Incident
-- IG Briefing for Secretary Christopher .......         9,11,15
-- Dismissal of Employees; Knowledge, Involvement
   of Supervisors, Others ...................            10-16,18
-- Informing Congress and the Public ...........         10,18   
-- Contents of Report; Criminality .............         12-13,
-- Status of Investigation .....................         14      
-- Characterizations of Incident ...............         16      
-- Current Disposition of Files ................         16-17   
-- Contact w/ White House, Affected Individuals          17      
-- Administration Policy .......................         17-18   

Cross-Border Weapons Fire ......................         18      

Violent Incident in Mogadishu ..................         19      
Meetings, Signing in the U.S. ..................         19     
Rabin Visit to Washington ......................         19     

Informal Talks with U.S. in New York ...........         20     
Continuity of Nuclear Safeguards ...............         20     

Constitution, Referendum, Election .............         20-22  

ICRC Access to Political Prisoners .............         22-23  
Lifting Sanctions Imposed for Proliferation
   Actions with Pakistan, Davis Testimony ......         23     


                       DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                       DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

                                                      DPC #148

             WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 1993, 1:12 P.M.

         MR. McCURRY:  Good afternoon everybody.  I've got a couple of 
things I'd like to start with, to bring you up to date.  First and 
foremost, the tragic bus crash in the United Kingdom.  The United States 
Embassy in London has informed us this morning about an accident in 
southern England involving a tour bus carrying a group of Americans.  At 
this time at least nine people are believed to be dead.  The bus was 
enroute from London to Canterbury.

         Ambassador Ray Seitz over in London has dispatched five 
consular officers who are now on the scene to assist survivors and to 
maintain contact with local police officials.  He is also sending the 
Consul General to the site.

         A nearby hospital has set up a casualty team to receive the 
injured.  The Ambassador has established a task force at the embassy, 
and they're standing by now to assist Americans as necessary.

         The bus was carrying 42 persons.  There's a news account now 
saying 46; but the information we have available at this point is 42, 
mostly Americans.  We have no information yet on the number of injured.

         The bus appears to have gone off the road, but we don't have 
any further details.  We're getting good cooperation from the local 
authorities who are on the scene.  We are obviously working to determine 
who is injured, and we'll contact family members consistent with 
obligations that we have under the Privacy Act.  I would say that there 
is a telephone number at the Citizens Emergency Center where those who 
are concerned can contact.  That's (202) 647-5226.

         Obviously, we express our condolences to the families of the 
persons killed in this tragic accident.  Our thoughts are also at this 
time with those who have been injured.

         Q   How many of the nine dead are Americans?

         MR. McCURRY:  This does not say.  We know it's a group  of 
mostly Americans on the bus.  At least nine people are believed to be 

         I understand that they're working the list right now, and 
they've confirmed five currently that they have identified and 
contacting here; but they'll be continuing to work on that throughout 
the day, obviously.

         Q    Were other Americans injured as well as the dead?

         MR. McCURRY:  It seems so.  We don't have a confirmed number of 
additional who are injured, but we are getting good reporting from the 
scene, from both U.S. authorities and then from the local authorities 
and from media sources as well.

         Q    I've got to ask this:  Is there any indication yet as to 
the -- you said the bus went off the road.  Is there any indication as 
to the cause of the bus going off the road?  Was it a traffic accident 
or any faulty equipment or anything of that sort?

         MR. McCURRY:  All we have indicated at this time is that the 
bus appears to have gone off the road, so obviously they will be looking 
at it and will be working with local authorities as they investigate the 
accident itself.

         Second:  I have a statement on the situation in Yemen.  The 
United States Government has followed closely recent unsettling 
political events in Yemen, a nation which took an important step towards 
democracy with its successful parliamentary election in April of 1993.  
The Yemeni elections -- the first multiparty elections in the Arabian 
Peninsula -- marked an important development in the history of the 
region, consistent with United States support for democratization.

         The United States Government supports strongly the unity of 
Yemen as being in the best interests of the Yemeni people and the people 
of the region as a whole.  The United States also supports progress 
towards greater popular participation in government, democratization, 
and economic reform leading to a free market system in Yemen.

         At the time of unification in 1990 the Yemenis themselves made 
clear their wish to build a new nation with new and better institutions.  
The United States welcomed this effort.

         In light of recent events, in which this new chapter in the 
development of Yemen has been strained by internal disagreements, the 
United States wishes to make clear its view that there must be a 
peaceful resolution of all political issues through dialogue among all 
interested parties.  This will allow the process of further 
democratization and institution-building to continue, something that the 
United States would welcome.

         On a last matter -- going back to a question Jack put 
yesterday, he had asked for some data on the number of people that we 
believe at risk in Bosnia-Herzegovina.  That number we estimate at 2.739 
million.  I've got a breakdown by region if that would be helpful.  Why 
don't I run through that for the benefit of the transcript.

         In Banja Luka, 303,000; in the Bihac -- I assume that this is 
the Bihac pocket -- we're talking regional numbers:  228,000; Central 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, 1 million 1 thousand -- that's 1,001,000; Eastern 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, 508,000; within Sarajevo, 431,000; within southern 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, 268,000.

         There are obviously, in addition, displaced persons -- 
refugees, social cases -- in other parts of the former Yugoslavia.

         Within Croatia we estimate 690,000 people at risk this winter.  
In the U.N.-protected areas, 110,000; within Serbia, 565,000 -- 
obviously part of that affected by the economic sanctions.  Montenegro, 
82,000; Macedonia, 27,000; Slovenia, 45,000.

         The total for all of the former Yugoslavia, roughly, 4.258 
million individuals who are now at risk because of the continued 
fighting, the effects of the civil war there, and the humanitarian 
disaster that has befallen the former Yugoslavia.

         It raises, obviously, the question of what currently we have 
been doing about it.  I think we've talked day to day here about the 
types of airdrops, convoys, relief activity we are providing through 
U.N. agencies.  I would say that as of November 8, the total that we 
have spent since 1991 for various relief efforts in Bosnia-Herzegovina 
is now $417,255,000.  That has been for both material assistance that we 
have provided and the grants that we provided to non-governmental 
organizations and others who are conducting the relief effort in Bosnia.

         Q    Since when?

         MR. McCURRY:  Since 1991.  These are FY-91 through FY-94 

         Q    Does that figure include -- does the $417 million include 
the cost of transportation and the airdrops and all that stuff?

         MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  In the past when we've looked at that total 
number, it does include the various expenditures for transport.  A 
question that I always get tripped on is, "How much of that breaks out 
for the amount it costs to transport goods and supplies to the region?", 
and they have a way of calculating that.  If you're interested in that, 
we can pin that down for you.

          Q    The figures on people at risk, those are U.S. Government 
figures or United Nations figures?

         MR. McCURRY:  These are figures that we have compiled, but 
we're doing this in cooperation or in consultation with UNHCR and with 
others who are working in the region.

         Q    And what constitutes being at risk?

         MR. McCURRY:  It's described as being displaced persons, 
refugees, and social cases.  This partly reflects -- as you know from 
the death count last winter in Bosnia, this is nowhere near the 
proportion of those who actually lost their lives, but it is a number -- 
consistent with Jack's question yesterday -- the number that we perceive 
to be at risk because they are either homeless; they are somehow 
suffering from effects of malnutrition, or disease; or they've been 
otherwise been affected one way or another by the continuing fighting 
and the continuing strife there.

         Q    So you don't think they're at risk necessarily from a 
bullet?  You think they are at risk from the effects of the war, be it 
starvation, malnutrition, disease, lack of housing, potentially freezing 
to death, so on and so forth?

         MR. McCURRY:  As we saw with the children who were shelled in 
the school in Sarajevo, they're clearly at risk from fighting as well.  
But this is a number that goes much beyond that that indicates those who 
are affected and who have humanitarian needs because of the effects of 

         Q    These are staggering figures -- 4.25 million people in 
this region.  Is there a view from the U.S. Government as to the 
magnitude of this?  You've laid out the numbers almost surgically here.

         MR. McCURRY:  I didn't mean to do that; for exactly the reason 
I brought them to your attention at the beginning of the briefing today 
because they are staggering.  They indicate the magnitude of the 
humanitarian crisis that we face in the former Yugoslavia this summer; 
and I think they remind us of the importance and the necessity of 
returning to a political dialogue that can help the three parties in 
conflict in Bosnia resolve their fighting, their differences, and enter 
into a process that can help rebuild that war-torn nation.


         Q    Are you aware that at the U.N. protected safe havens the 
Serb militias, while letting in at least limited amounts of basic food 
and medicines, are not allowing in winterization materials -- plastic 
sheeting, childrens' clothing, shoes, and the other basics which 
suggests, I suppose, a policy that instead of shooting them, letting 
them freeze to death this winter?

         MR. McCURRY:  As we've said from time to time here, there is 
ample evidence that there are instances of banditry; there have been, in 
some cases, armed conflict that has disrupted the supply of humanitarian 
materials, both fighting that's occurred in and around convoy routes; 
and then in some cases what is just purely criminal activity, people who 
are siphoning off supplies much like you just suggested with your 
question.  Yes, we're aware of that.

         UNPROFOR raises that fairly regularly.  UNHCR raises that 
fairly regularly as one of the things that makes it very, very difficult 
to conduct their humanitarian relief activity in that country.

         Q    I don't mean siphoning off.  I mean that the policy, or 
the actions of these militias is that while they will honor the letter 
of the agreement or avoid provocation by allowing in limited amounts of 
food and medicine, that they specifically will not allow in the other 
kinds of winterization materials that people will need to keep from 
freezing to death this winter.  Is there an American or an allied 
response to see that the materials needed to keep people from freezing 
to death will, in fact, reach the protected people in those havens?

         MR. McCURRY:  They are.  I don't think you were here yesterday 
when I talked about the proportion of airlifts, for example.  When we 
encounter problems on the ground -- and admittedly there have been 
problems, although there is some evidence that they are allowing 
winterization supplies to reach certain destinations, especially central 
Bosnia -- that's one reason why they have begun to devote a substantial 
proportion of the airlifts to the dropping of winterization supplies:  
plywood, plastic sheeting, the types of things that are necessary.  We 
got into that a little bit yesterday.


         Q    Sarajevo was shelled again today, and I think the death 
toll is eight or nine people.  Can you still talk about improvement in 
the strangulation of Sarajevo, as you said yesterday?

         MR. McCURRY:  The overall conditions in Sarajevo are affected 
not only by shelling but by gas, water supplies, the types of things 
that are necessary for the populations that are living there.

         There have been instances of shelling, including this awful 
incident that occurred yesterday.  I gather you're saying that there may 
have been another round of shelling today.  That is, again, evidence 
that NATO communiques of August 2-9, which are valid, are things that 
may be a subject of discussion.

         Q    Mike, the sort of thing that is going on that Terry 
describes, does that constitute strangulation of these safe areas?  Or 
does strangulation apply only to failure to allow food and medical 
supplies to get at?

         MR. McCURRY:  I can't, for you here, define "strangulation" 
because that's a specific phrase that, as you know, is reflected in the 
August 2 and 9 communiques of NATO.  That is a question that very 
properly would rest before the North Atlantic Council.

         Q    Well I know.  But isn't there some sort of guideline as to 
what constitutes strangulation?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm not aware in that communique of formal 
criteria that defines "strangulation."  That's one reason why the United 
States has felt it very important to continue to assess regularly the 
situation on the ground with our allies in NATO, and that's one thing 
that we continue to do.

         Q    So the possibility exists, then, that allowing, or failure 
to allow food to get in, or medicine, constitutes a violation; but 
cutting off winterization supplies, warm clothing, would not constitute 
a violation?

         MR. McCURRY:  I can't make that distinction for you.  I don't 
know where you would say that that constitutes strangulation, or how you 
would define that because, as you say, it relates to a decision that I 
think that NATO will have to make collectively.

         Q    Since our policy is based on preventing strangulation -- 
NATO's policy is based on preventing strangulation -- wouldn't it 
behoove somebody to try to define what "strangulation" is?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'll tell you that is a subject that we are 
dealing with internally within the United States Government.  It's 
something that ultimately we have to deal with our European allies on as 
well, and it is something that we have been in close contact with them 

         Q    This question of knowing what "strangulation" is, you've 
stood up there repeated times in recent weeks and said, it is not for us 
to define or decide when it's strangulation; it's up to the North 
Atlantic Council, which strikes me as somewhat trying to evade the issue 
and that it was the U.S. that went to NAC to get the NATO statement.  
The U.S. Administration had made a point of how hard it pushed to get 
that.  In other kinds of forums, the U.S. will often say what it 
believes about a situation; it will say what it thinks the U.N. Security 
Council should do -- say, what other multinational bodies should do so 
the U.S. shows leadership which this Administration has been criticized 
for lacking.

         MR. McCURRY:  What is your question?

         Q    The question is, you have repeatedly said it is not up to 
the U.S. to state or decide whether there is strangulation taking place.  
It is up to this other body, other people, the NAC, as if this is an 
entirely distant and disconnected entity.

         MR. McCURRY:  What's the question?

         Q    Why won't the U.S. say whether or not it believes there's 
strangulation taking place?  Why do you always defer it to NAC?

         MR. McCURRY:  Because the phrase "strangulation" raises the 
prospects of air strikes, as suggested in the August 2 and 9 NATO 
communiques, and that's not something I'm going to comment upon 

         Q    It was a term that the Secretary of State initiated.  It 
was his word.  Why can't you define his word?

         MR. McCURRY:  I can easily define his word.  But you know and I 
know, in answer to that question, it is something related to a decision 
that NATO has to make.

         Q    Is NATO -- you said a minute ago, now that these facts 
about the situation around Sarajevo are coming to the fore again and 
that pressure is increasing, that it would be a matter for discussion -- 
the NATO resolutions would be a matter for discussion.  Has anybody 
moved to the point beyond discussion where NATO would actually implement 
the discussion that it had previously reached, which was that if 
Sarajevo is strangled, air strikes would be conducted?

         MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of.

         Q    Is there any discussion of implementation going on right 

         MR. McCURRY:  Of implementing the August 2 and 9 communiques?

         Q    Yeah, as opposed to discussing?

         MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of, specifically, on 
implementing those communiques.

         Q    New subject?

         Q    One more.  The UNHCR is very interested in opening the air 
field at Tuzla.  I guess there's been some negotiations with the various 
parties on the ground there, the U.N., to try to get that done.

         I believe Mrs. Ogata has also requested U.S. help if and when 
that is open -- help opening the airport.  What view does the U.S. take 
toward opening that field?  What would the U.S. be willing to do to help 
open up that alternate -- essentially, a second airlift route to that 
stranded community in central Bosnia?

         MR. McCURRY:  Two points on it.  One, that is a question that 
is currently being reviewed within the government, so it's something I 
can't share with you an opinion on that because the government hasn't 
discussed that and reviewed it through the interagency and principals 
and deputies review process.

         Second:  One thing that is important on that, those familiar 
with the humanitarian conditions stress that it would be helpful to open 
Tuzla airport but also it is not considered a substitute for the regular 
movement of convoy traffic, and we continue to place very great emphasis 
on the need to keep convoy lines open as well.

         It is, I grant you, something that has been seen as something 
that would be very helpful, particularly given the concentration of many 
of the people we talked about earlier within the region of Tuzla 

         Q    But at this point the Administration doesn't know whether 
or what it would be willing to do to open it up?

         MR. McCURRY:  The Administration has this under very active 

         Q    I keep coming back to the magnitude of the numbers which 
you have described -- 2.7 million people in Bosnia and 4.25 million in 
the area.  Is there a sense of urgency and horror within our government 
as to the magnitude of this potential disaster over there?

         MR. McCURRY:  As a magnitude, read the recent reports from the 
U.N. on refugee flights globally.  In the context of the overall 
worldwide humanitarian situation affecting refugees, this is but a part 
of a larger picture that is of very deep and urgent concern to the 
United States.

         But, specifically, is Bosnia horrifying, troubling?  It is no 
more horrifying or troubling than the instances around this globe where 
populations, because of civil strife, fighting, face these types of 
humanitarian disasters.  I wouldn't want to try to rank-order this 
compared to other things in other places around the world.  They're all 
equally troubling and horrifying.

         Q    Mike, are you saying that the issue of strangulation 
should wait until -- should be a matter of discussion for NATO?  Are you 
suggesting that should wait until the next summit and it could be raised 

          MR. McCURRY:  Let me clarify that.  I did not say that.  In 
answering Ralph's question, I said, to my knowledge there's not anything 
actively underway to activate the August 2-9 provisions of the NATO 
communique that I'm aware of.  I didn't suggest that it should 
necessarily wait until the NATO ministerial meetings or the NATO summit.  
I just am telling you -- as a matter of fact, I'm not aware of anything 
that is currently underway.

         Q    Is the U.S. suggesting the converse of that?  Is the U.S. 
calling up its allies today and saying, we think we ought to start 
talking about implementing?

         MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of.

         Q    New subject?

         MR. McCURRY:  New subject.

         Q    Can I ask you what the Secretary learned about the State 
Department files investigation when he talked with the Inspector General 

         MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  This is going to take a bit for me to go 
through, so if you can bear with me I will give you a little background 
and then get into the substance of the question.

         For background:  An item appeared -- I think as many of you 
know -- in a September 1 Washington Post column concerning State 
Department personnel files.  The item raised issues that senior managers 
in the Department felt needed urgent attention.

         Assistant Secretary for Administration, Pat Kennedy, who is the 
responsible officer in the Department for records management, among 
other things, established certain facts about the location of files that 
had been retrieved from storage by the Department's Office of White 
House Liaison.  After consulting with the Department's Legal Advisor, 
Pat Kennedy referred the matter to the Department's independent Office 
of Inspector General by opening of business the following day -- that is 
to say, 24 hours after the Post item appeared.

         During the Inspector General's subsequent inquiry, Secretary 
Christopher had no contact with those conducting this inquiry, but the 
Secretary did learn that the inquiry was nearing completion late last 
week when the Inspector General, Sherman Funk, so informed the United 
States Congress.

         The Inspector General forwarded a summary of his findings to 
the U.S. Justice Department for its review late in the day on November 
8, as he told Congress that he would.  Sherman Funk arranged to brief 
the Secretary on its findings the next day -- yesterday.

         The Secretary received an oral briefing as is appropriate given 
the procedures from this Inspector General late in the day yesterday.  
Based on this briefing, the Secretary immediately lost confidence in two 
employees of the Department.  He contacted the supervisors of these two 
employees Tuesday evening -- last night, that is -- after business hours 
and ordered that the two employees be dismissed immediately.

         Those employees were contacted this morning and they were 
dismissed.  The two employees are Mark Schulhof, a staff assistant to 
the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, and Joseph Tarver, 
former Director of the White House Liaison Office, who has been on 
assignment since September 8 at the National Foreign Affairs Training 
Center in Arlington.

         Because this matter has now been referred to the Justice 
Department, it's not appropriate for me to go beyond the account I've 
just given you of the facts.  The Justice Department will decide whether 
or not to prosecute in this case.  Should the Department decline 
prosecution, the Inspector General will then forward certain 
Administrative findings to the Secretary of State -- that is, the State 
Department's Inspector General.

         When that has occurred, the Inspector General would then be in 
a position to brief members of Congress on the matter.  We can also at 
that point provide further information to the public, and it would be 
our intention to do that at the first moment that it is appropriate.

         Q    Can you tell us what Schulhof and Tarver did at the White 
House Liaison Office?  What their roles were?

         MR. McCURRY:  Joseph Tarver is a GS-15.  He is a Schedule C 
political appointee who assisted in the transition and who has served as 
Director of the Office of White House Liaison from February 1 to 
September 8.  As I indicated, he has most recently been working out at 
the National Foreign Affairs Training Center doing administrative work.

         Mark Schulhof is a GS-11 Schedule C political appointee who 
serves as a staff assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Public 
Affairs.  He was not in the Office of White House Liaison.

         Q    So he worked for you?

         MR. McCURRY:  He worked for Tom Donilon.

         Q    Mike, the Secretary lost confidence in Tarver and 
Schulhof, and you said he contacted their supervisors.  That would mean 
the Secretary, in one case, would have contacted Tom Donilon and told 
him of his loss of confidence in this GS-11 aide.

         Has the Secretary lost any confidence in Schulhof's supervisor?

         MR. McCURRY:  No.  He contacted Mr. Tarver's supervisor, who 
would be the Under Secretary for Management, Dick Moose, and Assistant 
Secretary Donilon for the express purpose of telling them that the two 
employees should be dismissed.

         The Secretary, I think, is confident that he has taken all the 
actions that are appropriate at this time based on the oral briefing 
given by the Inspector General.

         It's very clear that the supervisors were not aware of the 
facts that had been presented by the Inspector General to the Secretary.  
After the Secretary's briefing, the Secretary informed both Dick Moose 
and Tom Donilon that he had lost confidence in two of their employees, 
and that's when that led to the actions today.

         The Secretary indicated to me, based on his briefing, that 
there is absolutely no evidence at all indicating knowledge or 
involvement by senior managers of the Department.

         Q    Why isn't it clear that the supervisors were not aware of 
the facts of the act?  Or more appropriately, why isn't it clear that 
the supervisors were not aware of the activities of their immediate 
subordinates?  And if they were not, shouldn't they have been?

         MR. McCURRY:  They were not aware of the facts presented by the 
Inspector General to the Secretary.

         Q    But presumably the facts have something to do with the 
activities of the people who've been fired.  Does this say anything 
about the awareness of the supervisors of the activities of their 
subordinates in general?

         MR. McCURRY:  No, it doesn't.

         Q    Have the supervisors been interviewed by the Inspector 
General in the course of his investigation about what knowledge they may 
or may not have?

         MR. McCURRY:  The Inspector General's investigators conducted 
62 interviews with 51 different persons.  I don't know whether or not 
they contacted the supervisors.

         Q    What did Mark Schulhof do?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'll tell you a little more about the report 
itself.  I want to stress that the Secretary received an oral briefing 
under the procedures.  He has not reviewed the written document; that 
the written document, as described to me  by the Inspector General's 
office, is about four inches thick, including attachments.  The basic 
body of the report is 23 pages, and then all the attachments include the 
interviews, pertinent documents, records and correspondence.

         More on the inquiry:  The two Office of Inspector General 
investigators who worked on this worked on it nearly around the clock 
for two months.  They were assisted at times by OIG supervisory and 
management officials and OIG attorneys.

         Q    Mike, does the Secretary retain full confidence in Tom 
Donilon and Dick Moose?

         MR. McCURRY:  Yes, absolutely.

         Q    What did Mark Schulhof do for Tom Donilon?

         MR. McCURRY:  I think I described his duties as being sort of 
general office work.  He answered the phone.  He occasionally assisted 
in advance work, and he did occasional research.

         Q    Mike, translating what you just said into more concise 
language, it sounds like you're saying they did in fact wrongfully 
remove from personnel files information which was then presumably made 
available to somebody else.  To whom was it made available?

         MR. McCURRY:  I am told by legal counsel to the Department that 
I cannot answer that question without jeopardizing an ongoing inquiry at 
the U.S. Justice Department.

         Q    But they did in fact remove information from personnel 

         MR. McCURRY:  I didn't say anything about the facts addressed 
in the Inspector General's report.

         Q    Do you have any information yet from the Justice 
Department as to whether they consider this a criminal matter?

         MR. McCURRY:  I've not seen anything directly here at the 
Department, other than the comments I've seen by spokesmen at the 
Justice Department on the matter, indicating that they had the matter 
under investigation.  But I'd suggest you contact them.

         Q    Is there any reason to believe that the Inspector General 
would have referred this to the Justice Department unless he had 
reasonable cause to believe that a crime had been committed?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm not familiar enough with the standards used 
for referrals by the Inspector General to know what threshold there is 
for referring matters to the Justice Department.  It's a question that 
really I'd have to address to the Inspector General.

         Q    Reading between the lines, Mike, the implication is that 
Schulhof, since he was in an office that dealt with the press, was the 
source of a leak.  Can you confirm that?

         MR. McCURRY:  I cannot discuss the contents of the Inspector 
General's inquiry.  It would be inappropriate for me to do that because 
it's now a matter that's under investigation by the Justice Department.

         Q    Until today every statement that you've made from this 
podium about this matter has indicated that the whole file search issue 
was essentially confined to the White House Liaison Office here at the 
State Department -- a very, very small office.  I don't know how many 
people were in it, but maybe, you know, fewer than a handful.

         Today you've disclosed that the files search matter extended 
into an office which is physically and spiritually adjacent to the 
Secretary of State.  It's in an office that is headed by perhaps the 
Secretary's closest aide.  I don't know whether you would describe him 
that way or not but certainly someone who's extremely close to the 

         You tell us the Secretary's lost confidence in this person who 
answers the phone.  But the point that strikes me as pretty important 
is, was the file search matter -- is the file search matter something 
which reached all the way to the Secretary's closest associates, and is 
the Secretary aware of the importance of that --

         MR. McCURRY:  I can't be any clearer to you than what I said to 
you earlier.  The Secretary indicated to me that based on his briefing 
by the Inspector General, there's absolutely no evidence at all 
indicating knowledge or involvement by senior managers of the 

         And I've given you some sense of the scope in the detail of the 
inquiry conducted by the Inspector General based on the information 
given to me by the Inspector General.  I want to say that very clearly.

         Q    Is it -- well, I guess we'll have a chance at some point 
to ask the Secretary about that.  Has Mr. Donilon made a statement of 
any sort to the Secretary about this matter?  I mean, did the Secretary, 
for example --

         MR. McCURRY:  There was no need for him to do so, based on the 
briefing that the Secretary received.

         Q    The material which these gentlemen retrieved and perused, 
you are not denying that they may have done this for someone else, or 
that it may have gone to someone else?  Or do you believe they did -- 
whatever they did, they did of their own volition?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm not sure I understand your question.

         Q    Two guys suddenly find themselves canned because they 
pulled some files out of places that they shouldn't have pulled them.  
Is this their own spontaneous creativity here?  Is there any reason to 
believe they did it for anybody else, whether it's senior State 
Department officials or not, and that they gave it to anybody else?

         MR. McCURRY:  I can only tell you what I told you earlier:  
that I think that based on the oral briefing that the Secretary 
received, he is absolutely confident that the action he has taken at 
this time is the appropriate action.

         Q    That doesn't answer the question.

         MR. McCURRY:  It gets to the question of whether or not -- you 
know, you're asking a question about -- well, I'm not sure what you're 
asking about.

         Q    I'm asking is there anybody else here?  This is it?  Just 
these two guys.  Is this investigation ongoing?  We discovered the last 
time the IG did an investigation that it kept on going after it had been 

         MR. McCURRY:  Well, the investigation is ongoing in the sense 
that it is now at the U.S. Justice Department.  I have told you I want 
to separate that issue from the question of the Secretary of State 
losing confidence in two employees who have been dismissed today.  
That's a question of judgment and management, not a question of law.

         Q    Is anybody else implicated in this in terms of the White 
House Liaison Office -- anybody who was perhaps reprimanded or anything 
like that without being dismissed?

         MR. McCURRY:  Not that I'm aware of.

         Q    I'd like to know what -- another way to go at this perhaps 
-- what sort of activities would cause the Secretary to lose confidence 
in his employees?  Are there different standards for --

         MR. McCURRY:  A Schedule C employee is required to have a close 
and confidential working relationship with the head of an agency or 
other key appointed officials within an Administration.  I think it's 
satisfactory at this point to say that the Secretary did not feel that 
those two employees enjoyed that relationship.

         Q    Do you have any more biographical information about them 
-- background information on these two?

         MR. McCURRY:  No.  I've given you what I've got.  I can tell 
you, knowing them both, they both served in the Clinton-Gore campaign.  
They worked here during the transition.  They're both -- I'd describe 
them as fairly young.  I think many of you probably know at least one of 
the individuals.

         Q    What did they do in the campaign?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm not entirely certain what their -- I can try 
to find out more.

         Q    Do you have ages?  Can we have that?

         MR. McCURRY:  I should have gotten ages for you.  I'm sorry, I 
didn't.  I'll get that and post it.

         Q    I don't mean to beat a dead horse here, but is there any 
implication that they were doing this for anybody else, or was this a 
singular, isolated act which they did by themselves of their own 

         MR. McCURRY:  I have to say honestly I do not know.  I think 
the Secretary received an oral briefing on the report, that procedures 
don't allow for him to review a copy of the written report; and I've 
told you as much about the contents of the report and the activities 
covered in the report as I'm allowed to convey, based on the advice of 
legal counsel.

         Q    "I don't know" is the right answer, I mean, in terms of 
where you stand.  Secondly, is there any indication that anyone else is 
implicated that you know of?  These two guys have been dismissed, but 
that doesn't mean that a much wider circle has fallen under a cloud.  Is 
there any way to describe that to us?

         MR. McCURRY:  I think in telling you that the Secretary is 
confident that he has taken all the actions that are appropriate at this 
time, based on the oral briefing that he's received from the Inspector 
General, I think that in a sense answers that question.

         Q    Then I've got to come back.  I have a couple of other 
detail questions, too, but a moment ago you told us that these 
employees, like all other Schedule Cs, have to have a close and 
confidential working relationship with senior officials in this 

         If these two officials had a close and confidential 
relationship with their supervisors, I fail to see how you can expect us 
to believe that they would just go off and do something illegal or 
improper enough to get them fired without their bosses having approved 
it or known about it.

         MR. McCURRY:  I want to make it very clear that at no time 
during this discussion have I said that they have done anything illegal 
or improper.  I said simply that the Secretary of State lost confidence 
in these two employees, and they were dismissed.

         Q    So the Secretary -- you're not saying that the Secretary 
thinks what they did was improper; you're just saying he's lost 
confidence, and so he's dismissed them for that reason, not for any 

         MR. McCURRY:  He has dismissed them because he has lost 
confidence in them.

         Q    Can I ask you about a comment you made, I think maybe two 
months ago.  I've forgotten exactly when it was.  There was a point in 
discussion of this matter when I think you referred to it as a 
"mistake," and I'm afraid I don't have the transcript here, so I can't 
go back and, you know, be exact about the quote there.

         But now that the Secretary's had this review, this report, does 
the State Department still say this was a mistake?

         MR. McCURRY:  I checked back, Ralph, on the transcript.  I 
covered just this matter on September 2 and September 7 and September 
10.  I'm not aware of anything that I said from here that resembles what 
you've just said.

         But let me say this.  I'd describe the Secretary in the wake of 
this briefing as being both "angry and disappointed."  He certainly 
didn't show any hesitancy in his determination to act as he acted last 
night.  He expresses his regret to those whose personnel files were 
discussed in the Washington Post account.

         Q    What is the status of those files, by the way, now?  You 
told us that as of a certain date they were -- Kennedy did something 
with them.  

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm going to make very clear, I'm not reflecting 
information in answering this question that comes from any knowledge I 
have about the Inspector General's report.  Based on prior information 
that I had, it was my understanding that the Assistant Secretary for 
Administration had immediately taken custody of the cartons of files in 
question and had put them in a place where they could be reviewed by the 
Inspector General.  That was within 24 hours, I believe, of the initial 

         Q    They're in the custody of the Inspector General still or 

         MR. McCURRY:  I don't know the status of those boxes.  They 
were available to the Inspector General.  I can try to find out from the 
Inspector General's what the chain of evidence is.

         Q    Did the Secretary of State call the President or inform 
him that he had something cooking over here that he was about to take 
action on?

         MR. McCURRY:  We have informed the White House today of the 
Secretary's decision on how the matter is being handled.

         Q    So it was done at a bureaucratic level, not Secretary to 

         MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  Staff level.

         Q    In what way is the Secretary expressing his regret to 
those whose files were looked at?  Is he writing a letter to them?

         MR. McCURRY:  I think he's asked Under Secretary Moose, who's 
most familiar with some of the facts involving the files themselves, to 
give a call to the two people who were mentioned in that Post item.  I 
know that he's gotten hold of one of them.  I don't know about the other 

         Q    That would be Elizabeth Tamposi and Jennifer Fitzgerald, 
is that correct?

         MR. McCURRY:  You can find the article.

         Q    Well, you're referring to two very specific people that an 
Assistant Secretary of State or an Under Secretary is going to telephone 
one of them and may have already telephoned.

         MR. McCURRY:  I don't have the item in front of me.  I believe 
it was Jennifer Fitzgerald and Ms. Tamposi, and I believe that the Under 
Secretary simply was going to say on behalf of the Secretary of State 
that --he was going to express regret that personnel files were 
discussed in that Washington Post item.

         Q    New subject?  Are we done?

         Q    I have one more question.  Is any of this reflective of 
President Clinton's vow during -- I believe it was the campaign when the 
subject of searching his own passport files were involved, that if 
similar action ever happened during his government, that someone would 
be fired the next day.

         MR. McCURRY:  I think it is entirely consistent.  The 
Secretary, as I just indicated, did not -- he acted himself,  but I 
think he's well aware of the President's pledge during the campaign.  I 
think the fact that within 24 hours this matter was transmitted directly 
to the Inspector General and that the Secretary has acted as he has 
within 24 hours of learning the information he learned last night 
certainly reflects the attitude that this Administration has on matters 
like this.  Beyond describing the Secretary's mood, I think I would not 
characterize that further.

         Q    Could I just ask you, did Schulhof or Tarver work for 
Donilon in the campaign?

         MR. McCURRY:  No, I don't believe so; but I don't know for a 
fact.  I can check that.

         Q    Did the Secretary or anyone on his staff phone any members 
of Congress who have written letters about this matter or who have 
spoken about it publicly in the floor of the Senate and so on?

         MR. McCURRY:  My understanding is that the Legal Adviser for 
the Department intended to call Senator Mitch McConnell, who has raised 
this issue at various points publicly, and discuss the matter with him.  
I don't know whether that contact has been made.  I can try to find out.

         Q    Can you say anything about why the Secretary was angry and 
disappointed?  Was he angry and disappointed at the absence of the close 
and confidential relationship?  Was he angry at the publicity given to 
the files?  Was he angry that anyone went after the files in the first 
place?  What about it caused him anger?

         MR. McCURRY:  I think he was angry and disappointed with the 
circumstances that led him to lose confidence in these two employees.

         Q    Do you draw any conclusions based on this affair and last 
year's passport file incident as to the relative merits versus the clear 
disadvantages of the policy of hiring at least low-level political 

         MR. McCURRY:  No, I can't.

         Next question.

         Q    Can you talk to us a little bit about reports that we've 
seen this morning of cross-border fire between Iraq and Kuwait?  Is this 
a serious thing?  Is this something we should be really worried about?

         MR. McCURRY:  I saw those reports just prior to coming in.  Our 
Embassy in Kuwait is now checking on the reports.  They don't have any 
confirmation of the reported incident.  They're going to continue to 
look into that report.  We'll check and see if they have anything this 
afternoon.  We'll keep you posted as we learn more about it.

         I'd say that roughly applies to -- some of you may know that 
there's been an incident in Mogadishu as well that we're trying to learn 
more about.  I think there's an action report that's being compiled at 
the Pentagon, and we'll be watching that situation as we develop 
throughout the day too.

         Q    Do you have anything on a reported meeting here perhaps 
later this week involving very senior Israeli and Jordanian officials, 
supposedly relating to an agreement those two countries have reached?

         MR. McCURRY:  Ask me how senior.  I think that there have been 
some rumors, scuttlebutt, in connection with Prime Minister Rabin's 
visit here that he might be meeting with I guess the seniorest Jordanian 
(laughter); and I can say that no such event is planned.  The Prime 
Minister is coming here for a bilateral visit.  He'll be meeting the 
President, the Secretary and other members of the Administration as well 
as congressional leaders.

         I will say, it goes without saying that the dialogue in the 
Middle East peace process has been quite active, and particularly on the 
discussions involving Israel and Jordan growing out of our 
recommendation that there be a trilateral approach.  There have been 
serious and very positive discussions, most recently in Paris when 
Ambassador Ross was there, and there has probably been other dialogue as 
well that the parties can tell you more about; but I can't tell you that 
-- just based on what I know today, there's no event planned at the 
White House.

         Q    Well, is there going to be some sort of an agreement 
signed a level lower than the summit level?

         MR. McCURRY:  You'd have to check really with the parties on 
that.  We don't have anything for you on that.

         Q    Do you mean you don't know or you don't have anything on 

         MR. McCURRY:  We don't have anything on that.

         Q    Will the Secretary be involved in any such event?

         MR. McCURRY:  He would of course be participating in bilateral 
meetings with the Prime Minister on Friday, yes.

         Q    Would he be involved in any kind of a bilateral meeting 
between the Jordanians and the Israelis at let's say the Foreign 
Minister level?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'm not aware of anything like that occurring any 
time soon.

         Q    Mike, can you give us a little bit the context of informal 
talks with North Korea which took place yesterday?

         MR. McCURRY:  I can confirm only that there was a meeting 
yesterday in New York at the initiative of North Korea.  I'm told that I 
can't discuss the details of the meeting.  The subject matter of the 
meeting, though, I think is quite obvious.  It's the issues that we've 
talked about often here regarding the nuclear program.

         I don't have any indication of how the meeting went, other than 
to characterize it as a meeting that occurred at the mid-level technical 
level.  I don't know anything about any additional talks at that level, 
but I certainly don't at this point have any information on a possible 
third round of talks.

         Q    How many times have you had that kind of informal talk 
after the Geneva talk?

         MR. McCURRY:  I'll have to check and get the absolute correct 
answer.  My recollection is not long ago we described a similar type 
meeting as being I think either the 35th or 38th such meeting, if I'm 
not mistaken, so I'll check and see.

         Q    You said in Beijing, China?  

         Q    New York.

         MR. McCURRY:  I said in New York.  You're right.  Actually, 
thank you for correcting me.  I think when we've used that number in the 
past, we've talked about meetings that have occurred in Beijing.  I'll 
try to see how many such sessions have there been in New York.


         Q    Do you have any more recent information about the question 
of continuity of IAEA safeguards?  You said earlier in the week, just a 
matter of days away --

         MR. McCURRY:  Yes.  We're checking on it daily.  I don't have 
anything new today on that.

         Q    On Russia, what can you tell us about Mr. Yeltsin's new 
constitution, and what can you tell us about the disqualification of, I 
think, eight parties from upcoming elections, one of them the major 
opposition party to Mr. Yeltsin.

         MR. McCURRY:  I thought I did have some things here on it.  We 
have taken a look at that.  

         We're still studying the draft of the constitution as it's been 
promulgated.  As you know, it's going to be placed on the ballot 
December 12, along with the other elections that  will occur.  If the 
document is approved by the Russian voters, the Russian people will 
indeed have their first post-Soviet, post-communist constitution.  It 
will replace the outdated and heavily amended and internally 
contradictory constitution that dates back to the Brezhnev era adopted 
in 1978.

         The new draft that is circulating contains a number of 
important provisions protecting rights and freedoms essential in a 
democracy and in a free-market economy.  It contains, for example, a 
bill of rights protecting individual and civil rights.  It also for the 
first time since 1917 provides constitutional guarantees allowing for 
the individual ownership of property, including land.  The draft 
constitution also establishes essential institutions of representative 
government.  It outlines the separation of powers among three branches.

         As with any document of this kind, it obviously is going to be 
debated, discussed, in the walkup to the elections on December 12; and 
there are clearly some elements of this constitution that are generating 
controversy in Russia, such as the powers of the presidency and regional 
government authority.

         I'd like to make it clear that only the Russian people can 
decide for themselves questions on the future structure and operation of 
their own government, and on December 12 the Russian people are going to 
have exactly the opportunity that they deserve to do that.

         Q    It just seems that they will have less of a choice on 
December 12, since he has sort of offloaded all these opposition 

         MR. McCURRY:  On the details of the draft and how it affects 
individual parties, we're still studying the draft.  In a sense we're 
studying the draft as the Russian people are, too, and again that's a 
determination about the internal debate within Russia over the 
provisions of that constitution.  I'm sure that might in fact be an 
issue that will enter into their own internal political dialogue.

         Q    In that connection, the Secretary's talked in his 
testimony last week about how he still feels -- or he felt at the time 
anyway that Yeltsin's commitment to the elections in June and the 
process of these -- the drafting of the constitution and the elections 
next month -- all led the Secretary to continue to feel that Yeltsin 
deserves the support of the United States.

         Since that opinion was expressed, Mr. Yeltsin has appeared to 
back off the commitment to stand for elections in June and appears to be 
moving to eliminate much of his opposition in terms of political 

         My question is, while the Secretary has made it clear he 
doesn't intend to meddle in the internal machinations of how the 
Russians go about their elections, the U.S. does often offer opinions on 
how democracy is conducted in various places.

         Does the Secretary think a one-month time frame for reviewing a 
document as comprehensive as the one you just spent several minutes 
outlining in the most summary fashion is an adequate review for a new 
democracy -- an emerging democracy?

         MR. McCURRY:  I haven't had a chance to talk to him.  I don't 
know whether he has an opinion on that.  I will ask him that, though, 
and see if he's got any observations on that.  I would say the important 
thing we would stress is that consistently in this there's been an 
effort to put decisions before the Russian people for them to express 
their free will through elections; and that's something that ultimately 
we consider very, very significant.

         Q    Even something of far less long-term significance, shall 
we say, such as the NAFTA agreement in the United States, has received 
much more open and lengthy debate than a draft constitution for a nation 
as large as Russia.

         MR. McCURRY:  I just don't have a comment on the length or 
duration that they are having for the promulgation of their election.  
Democracy is a deliberative process, and we've proved to ourselves often 
that it is very deliberative.

         Q    I guess the bottom line question is really whether the 
Secretary feels that -- not so much whether the length of time is 
important -- is the right amount of time -- but whether this is the 
right way -- whether it's adequate for the establishment of a new 
democracy, the length of time and the situation with the parties and the 
situation with the elections in June.  Has he revised his opinion at all 
on that?  Anyway, you can take the question.

         MR. McCURRY:  It's a new question, the context of how long do 
they have to debate that.  I'll see if I can work something up on that 
for later in the week.  By the way, we'll obviously be closed tomorrow 
because of the federal holiday, but back on Friday.

         Q    Mike, do you have anything on China's apparent willingness 
to take a great leap forward into the 19th Century and allow the Red 
Cross to visit political prisoners?

         MR. McCURRY:  I would just say that we are, first of all, 
hoping and watching to make sure that that does in fact become true and 
take place; but a decision by the Chinese Government to allow access to 
its prisons by the International Committee of the Red Cross or other 
international humanitarian organizations would be a positive step.  It 
would be something that the United States would welcome.

         Most countries, including the United States, permit such 
access.  Clearly, when the Secretary reviews the status of China's human 
rights program as required by the President's Executive Order on the 
Most-Favored-Nation status, this type of access is one of the factors 
that you could use to measure progress on that front; but I'd say for 
now, we hope that China and the ICRC will continue their discussion of 
this and move to a point at which that type of access can be granted.


         Q    Also on China, is the Administration looking at the 
question of lifting the sanctions that were applied to China not so long 
ago involving the proliferation issue?

         MR. McCURRY:  I've said and I believe Lynn Davis said at the 
time that we announced that the sanctions had been imposed that we were 
willing to discuss with China and with Pakistan steps that they could 
take that would meet our overall non-proliferation goals that could then 
lead to a waiver.

         I'm not aware that we've got a situation where that comes into 
play at this point.  One thing I'd want to check -- and you may want to 
check, too -- is I think Under Secretary Davis was on the Hill 
testifying, and my understanding is this subject may have come up today, 
too; so there may be some more from her on that subject today.

         Q    Thank you.

         MR. McCURRY:  Thank you.

         (The briefing concluded at 2:07 p.m.)


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