Tags: Despite | Insults | Bush | Says | U.S. | Should | Pay

Despite Insults, Bush Says U.S. Should Pay U.N.

Tuesday, 08 May 2001 12:00 AM

White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said at a press briefing: "The White House views that as a disappointment, and it's not going to stop this president, however, from vociferously carrying out America's role around the world in reducing the flow of narcotics and fighting the drug war at home.

"In fact," Fleischer continued, "the president, this week will have some announcements to make about fighting the war against drugs, and he'll have some announcements to report on that front. And so, despite this action, the president will continue to hold America high in fighting the scourge of drug abuse around the world."

Despite the setbacks at being voted off the panels, the president still wants the United States to pay the U.N.

"The president believes we should pay the dues that we owe to the United Nations. But the president is also concerned about the signal the United Nations, through these two entities, is sending to the world about the seriousness with which these entities will carry out their mission in fighting for human rights or fighting against drugs," Fleischer told reporters.

"It's hard to be committed to the cause of human rights when you've put Sudan and Libya on a panel that's dedicated to fighting for the cause of human rights. The real losers in this equation are people around the world who are struggling to be free. The United States is going to continue its role as a beacon of freedom and human rights. And the president will continue to speak out."

But Fleischer thinks the United Nations will now be weakened in its purported fight for freedom and human rights in the wake of the recent U.N. actions against the U.S.

"It's unfortunate that this one panel of the United Nations will be a weakened voice in that effort. But I remind you that this is not the full United Nations. The full United Nations will be able to carry out its work on human rights and other areas. The real losers here are people around the world who are struggling for freedom and whose human rights need to be protected. They're the ones affected by this vote. It's not the United States," said Fleischer.

"The United States is the land where human rights prevail, and the United States is a nation where its president will continue to speak out on behalf of the cause of freedom and human rights."

France, Austria and Sweden were elected to the Human Rights Commission seats that are allocated to Western countries. The United States had held a seat since the commission's inception in 1947.

On Capitol Hill, a tense mood surrounds this week's expected action on the State Department Reauthorization bill for 2002-2003, with

A possible compromise, according to Capitol Hill sources, involves legislation to lower the overall U.S. financial obligation to the world body as well as its contribution to humanitarian and "peacekeeping" missions.

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White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said at a press briefing: The White House views that as a disappointment, and it's not going to stop this president, however, from vociferously carrying out America's role around the world in reducing the flow of narcotics and fighting...
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2001-00-08
Tuesday, 08 May 2001 12:00 AM
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