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From: Stanley Lucas <slucas@iri.org>

Office of the Spokesman
For Immediate Release
February 7, 2002


February 7, 2002
Nassau, The Bahamas

12:20 p.m. EST

-- non-Haiti parts deleted:

Finally, let me say that the Caribbean, in dealing with the Haitian
issue, felt that that government of that country should be given access
to funds to help build the democratic
pillars which the international community is demanding that it provide.
The actions taken by President Aristide are in the right direction, and
the release of the cut funds would assist in building, rebuilding,
democracy in Haiti.  Not doing this could lead to a deterioration in
the situation.  So we urged that both major political parties should
sign the OAS Agreement, making way for return of an OAS/CARICOM
mission.  CARICOM will help Haiti in every way that it can, but the
U.S. assistance is needed, particularly with the independent
international financial institutions, if we are to see said progress.

In conclusion, let me say that we thought this encounter to be very,
very beneficial.  We spoke our minds very clearly.  I think it was an
American essayist, Emmerson, that said that sometimes a scream is
better than a thesis.  Mr. Secretary, I ask that you forgive us if we
screamed a lot this morning.

SECRETARY  POWELL:  Thank you very much, Mr. Minister.  Let me begin by
expressing my thanks to the Government of The Bahamas for hosting us
today and Janet, thank you, and all your colleagues here for the
excellent work that went into making our meeting so successful.

more non-Haiti material deleted

QUESTION:  I have a question for the Foreign Minister and for Secretary
Powell.  Secretary Powell, there are a lot of other nations that the
U.S. does support with bilateral assistance, support with multilateral
loans -- such as Uzbekistan, for instance, which also has a lot of
human rights abuses and jTder Initiative proposed by
Pust recently you put out a statement, or the
State Department put out a statement about a flawed election -- so why
is Haiti such a particular case that the United States has to make an
issue of it?  And for the Foreign Minister, about the nations that are
not cooperating in the war on terrorism, financial flows, things like
that -- why should they not be put on the list and held accountable as
every other nation is?  Thank you.

SECRETARY POWELL:  With respect to Haiti, we are providing aid to
Haiti, some $55 million in humanitarian aid this year, and over the
last seven or eight years we have provided hundreds of millions of
dollars to Haiti, and we have also been willing to support in recent
years assistance to Haiti that goes directly to nongovernmental and
private organizations and not to the government.  Our concern is that
there is a political crisis in Haiti and until that political crisis is
resolved, and the international financial institutions and the
international community have some confidence in the government of Haiti
to make best use of the funds that might be made available to it, then
we have reservations about releasing our holds on this kind of -- or
providing our advice to the international financial institutions to
provide this kind of assistance.  We also have been in contact with the
Haitian government for several years now with respect to standards we
believe they should meet.

President Clinton, before leaving office, laid those standards out in a
letter, eight specific measures of performance that we thought were
appropriate.  I would like to do everything humanly possible to assist
Haiti.  I have more than just a Secretary of State's interest in this
matter, because it was in 1994 that I went with President Carter and
Senator Nunn to ask those Generals to step aside before they were
invaded aside by the armed forces of the United States.  We succeeded
in doing that, and we made possible President Aristide's return, and we
have wished him all the best ever since, but there is a political
crisis in the country now that must be dealt with before the
international community can have confidence that money given to Haiti
through the government would be appropriately spent.  In the absence of
a solid political system, there is good reason to have a lack of
confidence in that proposition.

MINISTER INSANALLY:  To the question that was pulled, I would simply
say that you know the Caribbean countries are doing their utmost to
satisfy these requirements, and we think it would be unfair then to
discriminate against them, and to follow a pattern of "naming and
shaming" which, once applied you know, tarnishes the image of these
countries.  I should add that the most recent report by the FATF on
non-cooperative jurisdictions, which was issued on 1st of February
2002, the FATF welcomed the progress made by Caribbean countries to
eliminate deficiencies previously identified by it.  So I think,
though, we are trying in the region to cooperate.  There must, however,
be a level playing ground.  There must not be discrimination in
expectations or in targeting, and I think the countries that are
concerned in the region are committed to cooperating in this area.

CARRINGTON:  Thank you.  One on this side.

QUESTION:  Good afternoon.  Jerome Sawyer, Island FM Radio Nassau.  My
question is directed to Secretary of State Powell, and to Minister
Bostwick.  Secretary, you have indicated that the United States is
unwilling to advocate for the international aid to Haiti, but is the
United States planning to do anything to assist Haiti with its
political problems at this point?  And also, Minister, what kind of
case did you make to the United States on behalf of TTder Initiative proposed by
Phe Bahamas in
light of the situation with Haitian immigrants, and the fact that we
are innundated with immigrants?

SECRETARY POWELL:  The OAS has a number of proposals that we are
supporting as part of the OAS, member of the OAS, and we stand ready to
assist in every way possible. We want to see this matter resolved, and
as soon as it is resolved then there will be opportunities for
additional aid for the Haitian people.  So we stand ready to assist in
every way we can, and I think the OAS has got some solid proposals down
now that I hope will lead to a successful conclusion of this crisis.

CARRINGTON:  Minister?

MINISTER BOSTWICK:   I have fully put to the United States -- not only
in this forum but The Bahamas continues to do in every available forum
-- the special difficulties experienced by our country because of the
exodus or exit of Haitian nationals seeking a better way of life.  I
particularly brought to the attention of the CARICOM and of the
Secretary of State in this meeting the escalation of the exodus in the
past month and over the past year, and have brought also the attendant
costs, the increase in costs and the social services, and the possible
threat to the stability of our country that this occasions. The U.S. is
very aware of what is happening.  In fact, we have a mutual interest in
this, in that so many of the persons who come here from Haiti do not
remain here, but they seek to go to the United States, and so we have a
joint interest in this matter and we seek to address it singularly and
also severally.

QUESTION:  Secretary Powell, during your visit you have spoken about
the third border, spoken about potential ties around the world between
narcotraffickers and terrorism.  I am wondering if you have discovered
any ties in the Caribbean, between here and al-Qaida, either in money
flows or in people flows or in drug trafficking.

SECRETARY POWELL:  There have been one or two connections and I'd
rather yield to my friends in the intelligence/law enforcement
community back in Washington to describe in some detail, but nothing
that would suggest that the Caribbean region has become a major haven
or potential haven for al-Qaida terrorism.

more non-Haiti material deleted