Office of the Press Secretary
WASHINGTON, April 4 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is a fact sheet on the Democracy Corps component of the U.S. assistance package for Russia announced at the summit in Vancouver:
Purpose: Russia is embarking on the transformation of its
political and legal framework from an authoritarian foundation to
one based upon the rule of law, with emphasis on rights and
responsibilities of individuals, popular participation in
political and economic decision-making, open competition among
interest groups, governmental accountability, transparency of
political and legal processes, and predictability in social and
Program: To assist this process, the president is mobilizing
the Democracy Corps -- a broad coalition of American people and
institutions devoted to expanding the momentum for
democratization in Russia. As the coordinator for all U.S.
assistance efforts with the former Soviet Union, Ambassador Tom
Simons will oversee Democracy Corps activities in Russia.
government-funded activities in FY 1993 will include:
The summer of 1993 will be designated "Democracy Summer," with the start-up of a $25 million program of intensive people-topeople contacts between Russians and their American hosts. Approximately 3,000 Russians will be brought to the U.S. for exchanges and training in 1993. Two types of contacts are envisioned:
Exchanges: Exposure of Russians to life in a democracy can
foster grassroots understanding and attitudes supportive of
democratic development. About 1,700 high school students will
arrive this summer for a variety of programs: over 300 will
participate in short-term thematic group projects in areas
ranging from culture and the arts to youth leadership; 650
students will participate in year-long exchanges during the
1993-1994 school year; and 750 students will participate in
school-to-school linkages. About 450 undergraduate and 200 graduate-level Russian students will receive training in economics, business, public policy, government, education, and law. Another 200 government officials and professionals will participate in short-term education programs designed to introduce them to their American counterparts.
Training: In addition to exposure to democratic systems, visits by citizens of Russia to the United States can demonstrate U.S. methods of solving technical, managerial, and other problems that are key to Russia's successful adoption of a free market system. About 400 Russians will be brought to the U.S. for study tours and short-term training programs in key technical areas, such as banking, energy, environment, health, and agriculture.
Rule of Law:
These programs will mobilize a broad range of U.S. legal resources to assist the Russian reform of their legal structure to reflect democratic and free market principles, and to institutionalize support procedures and practices in the areas of commercial law, criminal law and procedure, and legal education. In particular, the U.S. will directly support President Yeltsin's Legal Experiment, an innovative plan to advance legal reform, including the creation of a jury system in five regions. ($5 million)
Effective Local Governance:
The U.S. will assist reform-minded local governments in generating, managing, and expanding financial resources in ways which foster the private provision of social services and broad private sector growth. The first two cities targeted are Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod. ($7 million)
Strengthening Civil Society:
The U.S. will mobilize private U.S. organizations (political and civic organizations, free trade unions, and advocacy groups) to work closely with counterparts in Russia -- reformers, grassroots organizers, regional interests to expand their participation in Russian political processes and in the dialogue on economic reform. ($2 million)
Strengthening Independent Media:
This program will allow the U.S. media and journalism community to share professional journalist techniques and business and managerial skills essential for functioning of a free and open democracy. ($2 million)
Developing Russian Volunteerism:
A wide slice of the U.S. private, voluntary organization community will assist private Russian groups to meet emerging social service needs during this period of economic dislocation. ($4 million)
Developing University Partnerships:
The U.S. will mobilize the U.S. education community to develop linkages and exchanges between American universities and partner universities in Russia that focus on areas critical to the creation of free market and democratic institutions. The Administration will establish an American Institute at the Institute of Foreign Languages in Nizhny Novgorod for study of American studies and language. ($3 million)
Total Democracy Corps Initiative: $48 million in 1993.