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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE Office of the Spokesman Taken questions for January 4, 1994

1. UKRAINE Q. What's the status of U.S. assistance to dismantle nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory?

A. DURING SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER'S VISIT TO KIEV IN OCTOBER, HE AND UKRAINE FOREIGN MINISTER ZLENKO SIGNED AN UMBRELLA AGREEMENT ON SAFE AND SECURE DISMANTLEMENT (SSD) OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS ON UKRAINIAN TERRITORY.

--LAST MONTH, THE U.S. AND UKRAINE SIGNED AN IMPLEMENTING AGREEMENT PROVIDING UP TO $135 MILLION IN ASSISTANCE FOR THE DISMANTLEMENT OF STRATEGIC NUCLEAR DELIVERY VEHICLES. THIS COMPRISES THE BULK OF THE $177 MILLION IN NUNN-LUGAR ASSISTANCE WE HAVE CURRENTLY COMMITTED TO UKRAINE.

--THIS WEEK, UKRAINE PROVIDED TO THE U.S. A DIPLOMATIC NOTE BRINGING THE SSD UMBRELLA AGREEMENT INTO FORCE.

--THIS WILL ALLOW US TO BEGIN PROVIDING THE DISMANTLEMENT ASSISTANCE NECESSARY TO HELP UKRAINE MEET ITS START AND LISBON PROTOCOL COMMITMENTS.

2. INDIA/PAKISTAN Q: What is the reaction to the recently concluded talks between the Indian and Pakistani Foreign Secretaries on Kashmir?

A: WE STRONGLY SUPPORT THE RESUMPTION OF HIGH-LEVEL TALKS BETWEEN INDIA AND PAKISTAN, AND COMMEND THEIR AGREEMENT IN PRINCIPLE TO CONTINUE THE TALKS AT THE FOREIGN SECRETARY OR OTHER LEVELS. WE HOPE THAT FURTHER TALKS CAN TAKE PLACE SOON.

--WE AGREE THAT A MEANINGFUL DIALOGUE IS NEEDED TO PEACEFULLY RESOLVE THE ISSUES BETWEEN INDIA AND PAKISTAN. TO THAT END, WE ENCOURAGE BOTH PARTIES TO APPROACH THE ENTIRE RANGE OF ISSUES CONSTRUCTIVELY WITH THE AIM OF ACHIEVING TANGIBLE AGREEMENTS LEADING TO REDUCED TENSIONS.

Q: Is the U.S. renewing its offer to mediate between the parties?

--THE U.S. IS WILLING TO ASSIST INDIA AND PAKISTAN TO REACH AND IMPLEMENT AGREEMENTS IF THEY BOTH SO DESIRE. HOWEVER, WE DO NOT SEE OURSELVES IN A MEDIATOR'S ROLE.(###)

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