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Two Statements By Clinton on Northern Ireland

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release May 6, 2000

STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

I want to join Prime Ministers Blair and Ahern in welcoming the IRA's commitment to initiate a process that will completely and verifiably put arms beyond use, and its decision to resume contact with the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning. This is a significant step toward realizing the full promise of the Good Friday Accord. I urge the loyalist paramilitaries to do the same.

I express appreciation to Martti Ahtisaari and Cyril Ramaphosa for their willingness to take part in confidence-building measures involving third party inspection of IRA weapons dumps. I have great confidence in their ability to contribute to this important task.

These developments offer renewed hope to the people of Northern Ireland that politics will once and for all be pursued through exclusively political means. The United States remains ready to assist this process in any way we can.

30-30-30


THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary (Lancaster, Virginia)

For Immediate Release May 5, 2000

STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

I am greatly encouraged that Prime Ministers Blair and Ahern have announced that their intensive talks in Belfast over the past two days have made progress, providing a sound basis for restoring the political institutions and achieving full implementation of the Good Friday Accord. I urge the parties, and paramilitary organizations, to seize this opportunity to realize these goals, in order to secure lasting peace for the people of Northern Ireland. The United States remains prepared to assist in any way we can.

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