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THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary


For Immediate Release December 22, 1993
                 STATEMENT BY THE PRESS SECRETARY
             ON THE PRESIDENT'S TELEPHONE CONVERSATION
                   WITH RUSSIAN PRESIDENT YELTSIN 

The President telephoned Russian President Yeltsin in Moscow this morning. The two leaders spoke for 30 minutes.

The President offered his congratulations to President Yeltsin and the Russian people on the recent free and fair elections held in Russia, and on the adoption of a new constitution. President Yeltsin said that he and the Russian government intended to work well and constructively with the new parliament.

The two leaders discussed preparations for their January meetings in Moscow, agreeing that part of the agenda would include a review of U.S.-Russian economic cooperation to date. In this connection, the President reaffirmed strong U.S. support for economic reform and democracy in Russia. President Yeltsin confirmed his intention to continue a firm course of economic reform in Russia.

The two Presidents also discussed foreign policy issues that will be on the agenda for their January meetings. They agreed on the need to continue the cooperative tripartite dialogue with Ukraine, with the aim of resolving the complex set of nuclear issues. President Yeltsin affirmed that Russia had no intention of interfering in the affairs of its neighbors. The President reiterated the U.S. hope for concrete movement on the question of the withdrawal of Russian troops from Latvia and Estonia.

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