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U.S. Department of State
96/10/07 Arrival Remarks at Bamako, Mali
Office of the Spokesman

                      U.S DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                      Office of the Spokesman
                            Bamako, Mali
For Immediate Release                              October 7, 1996

                        ARRIVAL REMARKS BY

                          Bamako, Mali
                         October 7, 1996

SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER: Thank you for that very warm welcome to Mali. I 
also want to thank the crew that constructed this stand in record time.  
A few minutes ago there was nothing here.  It's a very special privilege 
and pleasure for me to be the first Secretary of State of the United 
States to visit your country.  I very much look forward to meeting the 
Malian people and to bringing my impressions of your great country back 
to the United States.

This is my first stop on an African trip that will also take me to 
Ethiopia, Tanzania, South Africa and Angola.  I started here because I'm 
inspired with what the people of Mali have done.  You have shown all of 
Africa and the world that freedom can unlock the door to a better 

All over Africa, people are struggling to build multiparty democracies; 
Mali is doing that.  All over Africa, countries are trying to resolve 
old conflicts and to reunite once divided societies; Mali is doing that.  
All over Africa, nations are working to free their economies and to spur 
economic growth.  Mali is working hard and doing that, too.

Your country faces some of the toughest economic challenges and 
environmental challenges of any nation on the earth, but you have shown 
these challenges can be met as long as nations choose democracy and free 
markets.  You have made Mali an oasis of freedom, a champion of 
democracy in West Africa, a leader in the Sahel and a close partner of 
the United States.

I'm greatly looking forward tomorrow to meeting with President Konare, 
who has done so much to establish respect for democratic principles here 
in Mali, as well as, of course, with the Prime Minister and with the 
Foreign Minister.  I will also visit with the National Assembly to meet 
with members of parliament, with political leaders, and with 
representatives of non-governmental organizations.  As you probably know 
Mali is home to the largest Peace Corps contingent in all of Africa.  
I'm greatly looking forward to visiting our Peace Corps Training center 
just outside Bamako.

Everywhere I go, I'll have a simple message for the Malian people.  
You've made courageous progress and America will continue to stand with 
you.  I want to emphasize how much my wife and I and our entire party 
are looking forward to our visit here.  

Thank you very much.

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