|Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright
Press Availability with President Izetbegovic and President Zubak
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, August 31, 1998
As released by the Office of the Spokesman
U.S. Department of State
SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: Thank you very much President Izetbegovic and President Zubak. It is wonderful to be back in Sarajevo again. Every time I come back the city looks and feels better, more free, more alive, more competent -- in a word -- more normal. And every time I am inspired and humbled to meet people who live each day the struggle for tolerance, pluralism and community most outsiders can only talk about in abstract. By now, there can be no doubt that Bosnia has survived. That it has achieved peace, that it has preserved both its unity and its diversity. And now itís time for Bosniaís people to get back what they had before the war -- their homes, their security, their freedom to travel and work where they choose. And itís time for Bosnia to have something it didnít have before the war -- a chance to be a free country that is fully a part of Europe.
I spoke with President Izetbegovic and President Zubak about what must still be done to realize that goal. We talked about the need to get joint institutions to work better, about the need for market reform and privatization, about the need to support free and fair elections, and about the responsibility post-election governments will have to implement Dayton. Let me be clear, there will be no revision of Dayton. Dayton must be implemented fully. There will be no partition and there will be a single state of Bosnia and Herzegovina with two multiethnic entities.
President Izetbegovic also conveyed a very special request to me today. That the Peace Corps come to Bosnia to work in areas such as education and business development. Iíve already spoken with our Peace Corps director Mark Gearan and I believe that given the progress Bosnia has made under Dayton, this is a request we should be able to consider favorably.
There is one other issue I raised today that cuts to the heart of Bosniaís responsibilities under Dayton and that is refugee return. This is a tough challenge but it must be met and Bosniaís capital must set an example. At Dayton we recognize that there could be no just peace in Bosnia unless Sarajevo was undivided -- the whole capital of all Bosnia. Today, we also recognize that there can be no just peace in Bosnia unless Sarajevo is an open city, a center of life and culture as well as government for all Bosnians. We look forward to working with people of every community in Bosnia to help make that happen and we are determined to provide them the support they need to insure that it does.
QUESTION: You had no meeting with Mr. Krajisnik. Could you give us details about this?
SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: Yes. I am meeting with those people who support Dayton implementation.
QUESTION: I have a question for Madam Albright. I was in Srebrenica two days ago. President Izetbegovic mentioned the situation in Srebrenica. Even the remains of the mosque are destroyed. No Muslims so far are there. I have heard from the Serb people and there will not be they said. So what is the strategy to implement this because in East Bosnia, as you know, there is full lack of implementation, especially with respect to return of refugees?
SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: I have been concerned about Srebrenica for some time and this is a subject that we will have to give much greater attention to as soon as the election process is over. I think that Srebrenica is a symbol of suffering that has taken place in this region and we must do a great deal in order to validate what has happened in other parts of Bosnia and we will be turning our attention to it in much greater detail, I assure you.
QUESTION: (inaudible) missile in the Pacific. Can you tell what the U.S. Government knows about this, please?
SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: The only thing that I have heard about this Barry is that we have confirmed that it had happened and we are concerned about it as are the Japanese and Russians, and this is something that we will be raising with the North Koreans in the talks that are currently going on and obviously there is a concern.
QUESTION: Question for Mr. Izetbegovic. When and what solution do you expect for Port Ploce -- do you expect since minister Granic announced the solution for Luka Ploce and an agreement in September? The question for Secretary of State: we know that you will meet with Mr. Ante Jelavic. What are your messages for the HDZ leader?
SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: Let me just follow up on that. It is a subject that I talked about when I was in Zagreb and now here, and Ambassador Sklar has been deeply involved in the subject already and is offering his services and we understand the equities that Bosnia has, as well as the issues, equities that the Croats have so we will continue to work on this issue. We know that it is very important.
In my discussions with Mr. Jelavic, I will make clear that what I have said to all here that Dayton must be fully implemented. That is the basis under which there is support and would continue to be American support. We are not interested in any derogation of the Dayton Accord and I will stress the importance of opening up the media here so that it is possible for candidates to be able to speak to the people. So Dayton implementation over and over again, this is my message and my message is that those who support Dayton are the ones that deserve to carry this country into the future.
[End of Document]
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