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                     Office of the Press Secretary
                     (Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard)
For Immediate Release                                    August 26, 1999


                  National Security Staff Realignment

     Samuel Berger, the Assistant to the President for National Security

Affairs, today announced the appointment of Christopher R. Hill, former U.S. Ambassador to Macedonia and Special Envoy for Kosovo, as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Southeast European Affairs, a new NSC Directorate. This new Directorate will subsume the activities of the Office of the Special Assistant to the President for Implementation of the Dayton Peace Accords. As part of the reorganization, the countries previously under the Directorate of Central and East European Affairs will be divided geographically between the new Directorate and the European Affairs Directorate.

The new Southeast European Directorate will have responsibility for Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro), Macedonia, Romania, and Slovenia. It will also coordinate efforts to strengthen peace and stability, deepen democracy and civil society, and promote prosperity throughout Southeast Europe. These efforts include United States'participation in the Stability Pact for Southeastern Europe, as well as implementation of the Dayton Peace Accords.

The Directorate of European Affairs will assume responsibility for the countries of North Central Europe, including the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia.

This realignment of NSC Directorates reflects the opportunity we now have, in the wake of NATO's victory in Kosovo, to finish the jobs of implementing the peace and advancing the integration of the stable democracies of Southeast Europe.

Prior to his assignment in Macedonia, Ambassador Chris Hill served as Director for the Office of South Central European Affairs during which time he was also a member of Ambassador Holbrooke's Bosnia negotiating team. As a Career Foreign Service Officer, Ambassador Hill has served in Belgrade, Warsaw, Seoul, Tirana, and on the Department of State's Policy Planning staff. As a staff member for Congressman Stephen Solarz, he advised the Congressman on Eastern Europe. Previously, he was the Department of State's Senior Country Officer for Poland. Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Ambassador Hill served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon.

Ambassador Hill graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine with a B.A. in Economics. He received a Master's degree from the Naval War College in 1994. Ambassador Hill is married to the former Patricia Whitelaw and has three children.

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