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White House Rejects Expulsion or Killing of Arafat

White House Rejects Expulsion or Killing of Arafat

White House Report, September 15: Arafat, foreign service nomination

Aboard Air Force en route Detroit on September 15, White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan told reporters that the U.S. rejects proposals for the expulsion or killing of Yasser Arafat.

"We have made it clear," he said, "that expulsion, in any form, just would not help matters and only serve to give Arafat more a world stage."

In response to questions, McClellan said that includes killing, adding "that would not help matters. We need to get the parties to focus back on their responsibilities, so that we can move forward on the two-state vision outlined by the president.

"Yasser Arafat has been a problem, not part of the solution, and we want to work with those who are committed to peace, that are committed to cracking down on terrorism," McClellan said.

The press secretary said it is important that the new Palestinian prime minister "have unified security forces under his command, so that we can move forward and get back to the road map."


In a statement released late September 12, the White House said President Bush intends to nominate W. Robert Pearson, of Tennessee to serve as Director General of the Foreign Service, and intends to appoint him to serve as chairman of the Board of the Foreign Service.

Pearson is the former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey. He also previously served as deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in France, deputy permanent representative to the U.S. Mission to NATO and executive secretary at the Department of State. Earlier in his career, Pearson served in the U.S. Navy Judge Advocate General's Corps. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and earned his law degree from the University of Virginia Law School.

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