Public Papers - 1990 - February
Statement by Press Secretary Fitzwater on President Bush's Telephone Conversation With State President Frederik Willem de Klerk of South Africa
President Bush called South Africa State President de Klerk today to congratulate him on the announcement of the release of Nelson Mandela tomorrow. In the course of the 5-minute conversation, President Bush extended a personal invitation to State President de Klerk to meet with him at the White House. He also expressed his admiration for the significant initiatives announced by the South African Government in recent days, and reiterated his hope there would be continued progress toward a negotiated solution in an atmosphere of nonviolence. The two Presidents discussed the challenges that face all South Africans in this time of impending transition. President Bush stated U.S. willingness to help create a climate for negotiations and his plan to continue meeting with a broad spectrum of South African leaders. In this connection, he emphasized his intention to invite Mr. Mandela to meet with him to exchange views on how best to move rapidly toward a negotiated solution. Nelson Mandela has given more than 27 years of his life to the cause of human dignity and has inspired millions around the world who value freedom.