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Public Papers - 1989

Statement by Press Secretary Fitzwater Concerning Secretary Baker's Report to the President on Meetings With NATO Allies

1989-02-18

The President today, at Camp David, received a report by telephone from Secretary of State James A. Baker III on the Secretary's recent trip to NATO capitals. The President will receive a personal report from Secretary Baker at Camp David on Sunday.

President Bush asked Secretary Baker to undertake this mission in order to emphasize that the North Atlantic alliance is central to our foreign and security interests. European leaders, in turn, told the Secretary that their countries are firmly committed to the alliance as the key to the continent's past and future security.

The President reviewed at length with the Secretary a variety of issues that had been discussed with the allies, including the generally shared view that East-West relations are now clearly proceeding on the basis of the West's agenda. The President expressed his conviction that NATO unity is strong and his confidence that the allies will move together in addressing the major questions of international stability. In particular, the President noted that he looks forward to meeting with his allied counterparts at an early date to further advance the Western strategy to promote world peace and security. At the close of the Secretary's report, the President expressed appreciation to him for undertaking this very important but arduous trip and complimented him on his effective demonstration to our allies of the high value we place on a closer, cooperative relationship.

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