Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release July 30, 1999
Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe
Today President Clinton joined over forty leaders from across Europe
and North America in reaffirming our shared commitment to support the
reconstruction, development, democratization, stabilization and
integration of southeast Europe, in the wake of victory in Kosovo,
by formally launching the Stability Pact.
The Stability Pact, signed last month by representatives of over 27
democracies, including the United States, is an initiative to prevent
regional crises such as the Kosovo conflict from repeating in the
future. It seeks to help build a Southeast Europe animated by
cooperation and democracy rather than further conflict and ethnic
cleansing. Its goal is to stabilize, transform and eventually integrate
the region into the European and transatlantic mainstream.
It reflects a vision, shared by our European friends and allies,
that the President articulated in San Francisco on April 15, to "do
for Southeast Europe what we helped to do for Western Europe after
World War II, and for Central Europe after the Cold War: to help
its people build a region of multiethnic democracies, a community
that upholds common standards of human rights, a community in which
borders are open to people and trade, where nations cooperate to
make war unthinkable."
The Pact was adopted last month by foreign ministers from eight
countries of the region (Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria,
Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Slovenia, Macedonia); as well as the
European Union; the United States; the Russian Federation; Canada;
and Japan; along with representatives of the United Nations, NATO,
the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the
Council of Europe and of several other international political and
financial international organizations. A number of other countries
participated as observers and have asked to join the Pact. It
excludes the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia whose government has
contravened the Pact's basic principles. The FRY can become a full
and equal participant provided it continues to support full
implementation of Kosovo settlement and once it demonstrates its
respect for the principles of this Pact.
The European Union in its leading role in implementing the Stability
Pact and will provide the lion's share of necessary resources. The
United States will also play a major role, providing direction and a
fair share of the resources, in service to our national interests. The
Pact acknowledges NATO's leading role in the security field as the OSCE
will play in the democratization working table.
The Pact signals a strong, long-term political commitment to
integration of South Eastern Europe into the Euro-Atlantic
mainstream. It establishes a set of principles to guide future
cooperation and some mechanisms to facilitate coordination of
Under the Pact, the countries of the region pledge to work more
closely together to reduce barriers to trade and investment,
respect human rights, build democracy and create a sense of common
security - all critical steps for eventual integration into the
European and transatlantic mainstream. The United States and our
European partners, in turn, pledge to work closely with the
countries of the region to facilitate these efforts.
The Stability Pact establishes a "Regional Table" to coordinate
"Working Tables" for democracy and human rights, economic
reconstruction, development and cooperation, and security issues.
These tables will help participants identify new opportunities for
cooperation and enhance coordination of existing efforts. The Pact
does not seek to create new structures; rather, it builds on good
cooperation already underway in the region.
The important roles of the Southeast European Cooperative
Initiative (SECI) in fostering regional economic cooperation and
the Southeast Europe Defense Ministerials (SEDM) in fostering
regional military cooperation are also recognized.
Bodo Hombach, former Chief of Staff to German Chancellor Schroeder,
will serve as Special Coordinator for the Pact and overall
facilitator of the process. He will have an American deputy,
Donald Kursch, a senior Foreign Service Officer.