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Europe: Clinton Seeks To Resolve Problems Between Greece And Turkey

Washington, 17 December 1996 (RFE/RL) - U.S. President Bill Clinton says he will do whatever he can to help ease tensions between Greece and Turkey over Cyprus and other areas of dispute between the two nations.

Clinton said at a press conference in Washington yesterday that both Greece and Turkey are important U.S. allies and "very important to a stable 21st century."

He made the comments after meeting with European Commission president Jacques Santer and European Union president John Burton, who is Prime Minister of Ireland.

Clinton said he intends to invest "enormous amount of effort" in the next four years to try and succeed there." He urged Greece and Turkey to re-examine their positions and try to "reach out to one another."

"They plainly have more in common looking to the future than they do which divides them. It is only the past which continues to bedevil them," he said.