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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release December 11, 1998


The President welcomes the announcement yesterday of the formation of a private sector Host Committee for the 50th anniversary summit of the NATO Alliance, to be held in Washington on April 23-25, 1999. The Host Committee will serve an essential role in reaching out to local communities and the private sector in support of summit activities.

Alan John Blinken, former U.S. Ambassador to Belgium, has volunteered to serve as Chairman of the Host Committee. Ambassador Blinken's broad-ranging expertise in both business and diplomacy will be indispensable to the work of the Committee. Ambassador Blinken will be joined by two Vice Chairmen, Richard C. Notebaert, Chairman and CEO of Ameritech Corporation, and Robert G. Liberatore, Senior Vice President of DaimlerChrysler. The President is deeply gratified that this extraordinarily talented team has stepped forward to help ensure the success of the NATO summit.

The NATO summit will bring together the leaders of 44 nations from across the European continent. It will be the largest international summit ever hosted in the nation's capital. In addition to commemorating NATO's fifty successful years, the summit will chart the future course of the alliance as the United States and Europe together meet the challenges and seize the opportunities of the next century.