THE WHITE HOUSE
the Press Secretary
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
AND PRESIDENT SAMPAIO OF
IN ARRIVAL CEREMONY
Plaza of Torre de Belem, Lisbon
11:10 A.M. (L)
PRESIDENT SAMPAIO: On behalf of
Portugal, I have a great pleasure in welcoming you at the Tower of Belem. It
was from here, five centuries ago, that the Portuguese navigators who explored
the Atlantic coast of Africa discovered the maritime route to India, found
Brazil and circumnavigated the Earth.
Our increasingly globalized world
owes a lot to their deeds. It is a world in which every day there are more
opportunities, more information, more justice, more individual responsibility,
more freedom, more democracy. It is also a world lacking in solidarity, justice
and governing capability.
Globalization requires the international
community to take responsibility for the future of our planet. The United
States of America has a decisive role in this process. I would like you to
know, Mr. President, that insofar as possible, you can rely on our active
collaboration. The United States and Europe, in which we are integrated, have
the same values and share a great number of interests. We have a common
responsibility to contribute to a fairer world where all human beings, whatever
their race, sex or creed, can enjoy a decent life.
We have a common
interest in guaranteeing peace and security in Europe and in the world,
ensuring the prosperity of our economies and the defense of our values. Ahead
of us lies an extensive agenda which we will be undertaking together, and I
would like to underline some items promoting democracy and respect for human
rights, making international cooperation quicker and more effective in the
fight against poverty, disease and ignorance; extending the area of peace,
democracy, prosperity and security guaranteed by the Atlantic Alliance and by
the European Union; accomplishing the independence of East Timor and
contributing to the consolidation of democracy in Indonesia; fighting against
epidemics of infectious diseases that are, again, ravaging those areas of the
globe, in particular the African continent; deepening the mutual knowledge
between our two peoples and developing our scientific, economic and cultural
ties. I am certain that your presence here today will encourage our two
governments to face these challenges with renewed vigor.
on the threshold of the 21st century, the United States is at the forefront of
many new discoveries -- exploring the universe, pushing forward the frontiers
of science and advancing our technology. Before our eyes we see new
possibilities, which until recently seemed to belong to the realm of fiction.
The progress and dissemination of new communication and information
technologies, the advance of biology and genetics and the conquest of space are
shaping a new world that is reaching potential, but not altogether free of
To place the progress of science at the service of humanity and
meet the expectations common to the people of all continents of a peaceful and
prosperous world, we must be firm in our principles, daring in our thoughts and
clear minded in our actions. We have many challenges ahead of us. I am certain
that we will be able to handle them if we can combine our efforts and maintain
a courageous defense of our common interests. That is the meaning of your
presence among us today. And for these, I thank you and welcome you to
PRESIDENT CLINTON: Mr. President, Mrs. Sampaio,
Mr. Prime Minister, members of the Portuguese government, citizens of Portugal.
Here at this historic point of embarkation, from which Portuguese explorers led
an entire continent to see beyond the horizon, we find ourselves again, as you
said, Mr. President, on a new voyage of discovery.
And at the dawn of a
new century, Portugal again is leading the way, strengthening the European
Union while preserving our trans-Atlantic partnership; building peace in the
Balkans, supporting democracy in Russia. Portugal has been a clear, strong
voice for peace and stability throughout the world, and we have been proud to
stand with you -- in responding to floods in Mozambique, in peacekeeping and
humanitarian operations from Kosovo to Africa to East Timor.
Portugal, especially, for its constant commitment to East Timor's freedom. Just
before the ceremony began today, the President told me that some of the troops
who marched for us soon will be sent to join the peacekeeping mission in East
Timor. I know that this nation is proud of those troops and their mission; and
on behalf of the American people I thank you for it.
The United States
has always considered Portugal an especially good neighbor, thanks in no small
part to the shared pride we both feel in the numbers, the character and the
accomplishment of Portuguese Americans who have done so much to shape our
I look forward to my meetings with the President and the Prime
Minister. I want to learn more about new Portuguese initiatives on education,
science and technology. I applaud Portugal for the work it is doing to give all
its people the tools they need to succeed in this global Information Age.
I also look forward to the U.S.-E.U. summit. I hope we will use these
meetings, not just to strengthen our own ties, but to address challenges beyond
our borders. Mr. President, you mentioned many of them -- the AIDS epidemic in
Africa and Asia, the economic gulfs separating the wealthiest from the rest of
the world. These problems require innovation, imagination and courage.
Portugal's history is filled with those qualities, and I believe Portugal again
will lead the way.
When Vasco da Gama left here to explore Africa and
India he built on the previous experiences of Portuguese explorers like
Bartolomeu Dias, the first European to go around the Cape of Good Hope. That
beautiful promontory briefly had a different name. It was called: Cabo das
Tormentas, "Stormy Cape," after the storms that gathered round it. But after
further reflection, its named was changed to Cabo da Boa Esperanca, the Cape of
Good Hope, to reflect the unbounded confidence with which Portugal faced the
Well, we have a few stormy waters still to navigate. But we
should do it with good hope, and we should do it together.
very much. (Applause.)
END 11:20 A.M. (L)