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United States: Clinton Says NATO Expansion, Russia Top Priorities

Washington, 11 November 1996 (RFE/RL) - President Bill Clinton says NATO expansion is the foremost issue on the foreign policy agenda of his new administration.

He told a White House press conference last week that continuing an effort to build the first undivided democratic Europe in history is the first task of diplomacy in his new four-year term.

That means, Clinton said "to effect NATO expansion in a way that solidifies our partnership with a democratic Russia instead of undermining it."

He said the next most important thing is for America to continue to be a force for peace in the Middle East, Northern Ireland, Bosnia and other places.

And thirdly, Clinton said the United States must meet new security threats from organized crime, terrorism, drug-running and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

He also mentioned international trade as a foreign policy priority. Clinton said the United States will continue efforts to build a global economy that is increasingly open and fair and a force for global stability.