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U.S. Department of State

Great Seal Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright
Remarks with Members of the United Nations Security Council
Washington, D.C., March 30, 2000
As released by the Office of the Spokesman
U.S. Department of State
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SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: Let me say what a great pleasure it is for me to be able to welcome the members of the United Nations Security Council to the State Department. This is truly a unique occasion, and one that I think is very, very important. And I thank them all, for not only going the extra mile, but the extra 200 miles to get here. It is a great pleasure to have them here.

I think we have a very interesting day planned. The members are going to be talking to various members of the administration, here in the State Department and at the White House, and also going to Capitol Hill, to have a very important meeting with the members of Congress.

What I hope this meeting will accomplish is to be able to continue the very interesting discussion that has been going on with the members of the Security Council and both of our elected branches of Congress.

In democracies, I think it is very important to have the full understanding of both branches of the government, to understand how our foreign policy priorities are set. And I think it will be very interesting for the members of the Security Council to talk to our elected representatives.

So I think it's going to be a great day. I thank Ambassador Holbrooke for bringing our colleagues here, and the President of the Security Council for also -- really, it's great. And a lot of these people I knew from my previous life. A lot of you I know from my previous life. And I am very, very glad to have you here and we're looking forward to a great day.

Thank you.

QUESTION: Madame Secretary, does it set a bad precedent to see one nation's capital?

SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: No.

QUESTION: Do you think there is common ground, though, despite all the niceties that will happen today, regarding the benchmarks and the --

SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: I think that part of the effort here, is to try to have everybody understand what is happening, the importance that we put into the United Nations. I think that I am going to stress, throughout the day, as I know others will, the great stress that the US puts on our membership in the United Nations, and the importance of the United Nations, and on the great emphasis that we think that reform at the UN will make the UN better. And I think that that is where we have common ground.

Thank you.

PRESIDENT CHOWDHURY: Secretary Albright, if I may say that we, myself and my colleagues, are here, and we look forward to the day of dialogue.

SECRETARY ALBRIGHT: Thank you, Mr. President.

[End of Document]
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