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pd01ap02 Remarks to First-Responders in Atlanta, Georgia...

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[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page i]
Monday, April 1, 2002

[[Page i]]

Weekly Compilation of



[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page i-iii]
Pages 491-539

[[Page ii]]

 Addresses and Remarks

    See also Appointments and Nominations; Meetings With Foreign Leaders
        First-responders in Atlanta--525
        Senatorial candidate Saxby Chambliss, fundraiser in Atlanta--529
    Greek Independence Day celebration--511
    Mexico, dinner hosted by President Fox in Monterrey--497
    Peru, dinner hosted by President Toledo in Lima--504
    Radio address--497
    South Carolina
        First-responders in Greenville--518
        President's visit, remarks in Greenville--516
         Senatorial candidate Lindsey Graham, fundraiser in Greenville--
    Texas, senatorial candidate John Cornyn, fundraiser in Dallas--533

 Appointments and Nominations

    Health and Human Services Department
        Director of the National Institutes of Health, remarks--514
        Surgeon General, remarks--514

 Bill Signings

    Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002, statement--517

Interviews With the News Media

     Exchange with reporters in Greenville, SC--516
    News conferences
         March 22 with President Vicente Fox of Mexico--491
         March 23 with President Alejandro Toledo of Peru--498

Interviews With the News Media--Continued

         March 24 with President Francisco Flores Perez of El Salvador--

Joint Statements

    ``The Monterrey Commitments'': Joint Statement by the Presidents of 
        the United States and Mexico--495

Letters and Messages

    Easter, 2002, message--529
    Passover, 5762, message--528

Meetings With Foreign Leaders

    El Salvador, President Flores Perez--505
    Mexico, President Fox--491, 495, 497
    Peru, President Toledo--498, 504


    Education and Sharing Day, U.S.A., 2002--510
    Greek Independence Day: A National Day of Celebration of Greek and 
        American Democracy, 2002--513
    National Bone and Joint Decade, 2002-2011--509

Statements by the President

    See also Bill Signings
    Klamath River Basin Federal Working Group--536

Supplementary Materials

     Acts approved by the President--539
     Checklist of White House press releases--538
     Digest of other White House announcements--537
     Nominations submitted to the Senate--538

[[Page iii]]

  Editor's Note: The President was in Crawford, TX, on March 29, the 
closing date of this issue. Releases and announcements issued by the 
Office of the Press Secretary but not received in time for inclusion in 
this issue will be printed next week.


Published every Monday by the Office of the Federal Register, National 
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Compilation of Presidential Documents contains statements, messages, and
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[[Page 491]]

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 491-495]
Pages 491-539
Week Ending Friday, March 29, 2002
The President's News Conference With President Vicente Fox of Mexico in 
Monterrey, Mexico

March 22, 2002

    President Fox. Good afternoon. Thank you very much. Yes, in fact, it 
has been a very productive meeting, a meeting where we have touched upon 
three subjects, three chapters. One deals with what we have called the 
border alliance, intelligent borders, and the smart border initiative.
    The purpose is, firstly, to introduce the safety factor and hold it 
as an important priority and, at the same time, with the same emphasis, 
to seek for efficient borders, customs that are efficient as well, for 
an expeditious flow both of people, merchandise, products. And in this 
sense, what we seek is for those using these crossings, which are 
hundreds of thousands of people every day, to do so with that efficiency 
we are talking about. Likewise, within this same sense, we talked about 
a program to modernize, technologically speaking, our borders. And this 
would promote that efficiency.
    Among other points within this same category, we have also spoken 
about opening in airports that have high traffic, both in the United 
States and Mexico, a line to take care of the Mexicans and Canadians 
coming into Mexico and, in the case of Mexico, taking care of U.S. 
citizens and Canadian citizens.
    The second topic is what we have called the Partnership for 
Prosperity, where there are plenty of topics but the specific purpose is 
to generate opportunities for advancement, opportunities for income, and 
mainly in communities with high migratory rates in Mexico. For this 
purpose, we have spoken of joining efforts to facilitate resources for 
micro-, small-, and medium-sized companies, who are the ones generating 
the highest number of jobs.
    We have spoken of also working to bring down the cost of migrators' 
remittances to their families in Mexico, and this way facilitating those 
resources becoming productive projects toward important generation of 
employment and opportunities.
    We talked about important program of scholarships where, on the U.S. 
side, there will be investments up to $50 million, precisely to promote 
these scholarships and promote to the state level the creation of 
scholarships for universities. This is important in the purpose of 
creating, forming human resources.
    And on the other hand, we have also spoken of generating and 
facilitating resources for infrastructure, especially at the border, 
infrastructure for an efficient use of water, for water treatment 
plants, infrastructure for ecological or environmental purposes at the 
border, and some other investments in infrastructure along the same 
lines, the border.
    On the other hand, I believe it is very significant, and we have 
talked about it again, to have this great drive that has been announced 
by President Bush at the Financing for Development Conference. And it's 
the purpose to try to increase important resources for countries that 
are not as developed, for poorer countries. We have heard from many 
leaders present, many heads of state, who truly expressed this was 
welcome information, a welcome announcement. And of course, same goes 
for us. We are not a country to receive the help, but we clearly 
understand that there are countries who require this help to combat 
poverty very close to us, such as the case of Central America.
    So we hope that these additional funds, I repeat, have been very 
welcome, well-received by the community of smaller countries present 
here. This time these same resources also, part of them, to be used in 
these countries of Latin America or Central America.
    This effort of what has seemed to be called the participation in the 
millennium, the challenge of the millennium, is important for us.

[[Page 492]]

And we have verified this importance it has for the community of 
    Thank you. Now Mr. Bush will speak.
    President Bush. Thank you for your hospitality, and thank you for 
hosting the important conference on reducing global poverty. It was a 
success, thanks to your leadership and your vision.
    I'm so glad that the world could see Monterrey, Mexico. It is a 
really dynamic city. It's important for the world also to realize that 
as a result of President Fox's vision, this country is reforming. It's a 
vibrant place. It's an exciting place for people to live. People are 
finding jobs in Mexico.
    And Mr. President, I am grateful to call you friend. Thank you for 
your leadership as well.
    I try to remind people in my country, as many times as I can, a 
vibrant, prosperous Mexico is in the best interests of the United States 
of America. We were at the White House on September the 5th, and here's 
what I said then: ``The United States has no more important relationship 
in the world than the one we have with Mexico.'' I believed it on 
September the 5th; I believe it today. And since September the 11th, 
those words have been tested and proven. I deeply appreciate President 
Fox's early support and his continuing advice. And on behalf of the 
American people, I thank the people of Mexico for their support and 
    The relationship between the United States and Mexico is very 
strong, is very important, and it's growing stronger every day. America 
respects Mexico's culture and Mexico's achievements. By embracing 
markets and fiscal discipline, Mexico has created one of the most 
resilient economies in the region. And through NAFTA, our nations have 
forged one of the world's most dynamic trading relationships. Every day 
we exchange more than $650 million worth of commerce, creating wealth 
and opportunity for consumers and workers and families on both sides of 
the border.
    President Fox and I are determined to extend the benefits of free 
markets to all our citizens. As part of our Partnership for Prosperity, 
we'll help focus private investment on less developed parts of Mexico, 
creating more jobs and more opportunities for more people.
    President Fox and I are determined to make our shared border modern, 
efficient, and secure. The smart border declaration our countries have 
just signed will move us toward this important goal. Our common border 
must be closed to drugs and terrorists and open to trade and legitimate 
travel. America is grateful for Mexico's fight against the drug cartels, 
and I salute your many breakthroughs this year, Mr. President.
    President Fox and I talked about migration. Last year, we 
established a process to address this issue. We're making good and 
steady progress. Migrants make a valuable contribution to America. It's 
also important for our Nation to recognize, as we discuss immigration, 
Mexico has got a unique place in this issue. Mexico is different from 
other countries not only because of our proximity but because of our 
special relationship.
    We made some progress this year on an issue called 245(i). It's an 
important piece of legislation. It allowed families to stay together. It 
passed the House of Representatives. Unfortunately, it got stalled in 
the United States Senate. And my hope, Mr. President, is we're able to 
get it out of the United States Senate and to my desk so I can sign it.
    President Fox and I agreed on measures to reform the North American 
Development Bank, known as NADBank. We will increase the Bank's ability 
to make low interest loans to address urgent environmental priorities 
along the border. We also agreed to expand the Bank's range, so more 
people can benefit.
    Mexico and America are proud nations united by timeless values, by 
democracy, by faith, and by freedom. We have a modern relationship 
sustained by a mutual respect and trust. We've entered a new era of 
trade and cooperation and prosperity. And the United States and Mexico 
are building an historic partnership, one which will benefit both our 
peoples and provide a good example for the rest of the world.

Abortion Funding/Situation in the Middle East

    Q. President Bush, have you or General Zinni heard anything from 
Chairman Arafat

[[Page 493]]

that indicates that a meeting between him and Vice President Cheney 
could help catalyze an Israeli-Palestinian truce? And honoring President 

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