tv [untitled] CSPAN June 18, 2009 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT
be with her. i suspect her husband, this morning, is trying to teach her to write left-handed. >> the question of painkillers is a fair question. . >> i have no doubt that a fractured elbow can hurt. again, she remains the secretary of state. she is working from hon. she is doing what needs to be done. >> former president clinton and chuck daughter chelsea are here now? >> yes. >> [unintelligible]
>> she has a busy summer schedule for travel. we have to wait and see if there's any impact. we just don't know yet. >> as you know, there were many reports about what the secretary is prepared to do for the service members. can you tell us, beyond what the president announced last night, will there be benefits for civil service members? >> of this afternoon, we will be putting out a statement by secretary clinton that makes clear that we will be aggressively implementing the memorandum signed by the president last night. we will emblem of this policy, changing your foreign affairs manuel, standard regulations to allow same-sex domestic partners
for service employees to qualify as family members for a variety of benefits. the statement will have a long list of changes. this involves working with foreign governments to provide same-sex domestic partners, to the extent possible with diplomatic leases, privileges and obligations to work in the local economy. at the conclusion of this briefing, we will have a couple of osha shalls -- a couple of officials to talk about this. >> there are certain countries where homosexuality is illegal. >> in implementing this policy, we will have to negotiate certain privileges and immunities with governments that will do so. >> in negotiation is that
possible in a country where it is against the law. >> this will be one of the day tasks that are before us as we implement what the president has signed, with the enthusiastic support of the secretary. >> what if a foreign country refuses to accept a diplomat or ambassador based on sexual orientation? >> again, this is something that we recognize will need to be negotiated. that will be in consideration of how we assign our employees around the world. >> secretary clinton was one of the first people of the administration to talk about a pledge to make this happen. was president obama all along
going to do this? dishy influence him in some way to do this? -- did she influence him in some way to do this? >> if i recall, the secretary stated her support for this initiative in her first town hall with state farm employees. it obviously had to be worked through the government, not only the state department, but other federal agencies. >> was there already a process under way within which the state department was working? or did secretary clinton initiate that this become a government-wide policy? >> i think this is an issue that the secretary feels very strongly about.
obviously, that when into the president tonight is only for the state department. >> i wonder whether she feels that the memorandum signed yesterday did not quite go far enough. the proposals were very serious. >> as the president said yesterday, he is able to take this action based on existing authority. those include authorities for foreign service officers. those are details that the experts can get into. >> in view -- is the u.s. going to take any more steps to pressure israel? >> as we said yesterday, george mitchell will meet next week in paris with the prime minister to continue the discussion.
our position is clear. there should be a stop to all settlements. there should be action by both the israelis and palestinians to heed their obligations on the road map. as george mitchell said a couple of days ago, he recognizes that this is a negotiation. part of it is to get into a negotiation that will take a position that article it -- that is currently held with an agreement that everyone can live with. >> it seems to be that the negotiation is going on with the united states and raise real. but this is real it -- and israel. but this is between israel and the palestinians. >> of the real goal is a two- state solution. >> they can go back and forth however they want. u.s. and israel are friends and allies.
there is no need for a peace deal. the need is a peace deal between the israelis and palestinians. >> which is why the obama administration's priorities was to reing days at a very high level, and they present and the secretary appointing a special envoy -- involving the present and the secretary appointing a special envoy. it is central to a broader peace process, which is essential to peace in the least. >> netanyahu has succeeded in delaying -- >> i am not sure i necessarily agree there. >> there is an accommodation being worked out with the u.s.. is it the possibility is that
the responsibility of the u.s. to facilitate an accommodation -- is it the responsibility of the u.s. to facilitate an accommodation? >> as george mitchell said, we want to get back into formal negotiations. we are working harder in a decree the conditions that will allow that to happen. we recognize that positions held today and those held by the palestinians today may be at odds. all we're asking israel to do and the palestinians to do is to live up to the obligations that they themselves have committed to. >> there was a report today that said secretary clinton would like a stronger stand. this administration should be coming out more strongly in favor of their activities.
>> i do not think there is any daylight between the position of the daylighpresident and the pon of the secretary. >> does she think they should be putting more public support? >> clearly, we are watching what is unfolding here. this is not a static situation. what is clear is our interest. about the election itself, this is really about the iranians and the relationship with the iranian people and its government. this is not about the united states. what is clear also is why we are focused on iran, why the president made the outreach when he came into office, why we are hopeful, when this process is done, that we can begin to engage, not as a favor to iran
because it is and barristers, there's a potential for shared interest for the u.s., iran, and the international community. >> amnesty international is saying that many of the opposition leaders that are leading the protest are disappearing. do you know anything about this? why are you not speaking out more forcefully about the release of political prisoners? >> clearly, as we have said, there are things that we can glean from the various sources that we have. it is a murky situation. as you yourselves have noted, it is difficult to report what is going on in iran right now. we have made very strong
statements, consisting aliso, about our interest in having freedom of expression, freedom of assembly -- consistently so, about our interest in having freedom of expression, freedom of assembly. they should listen to the voices that are speaking out and have a leadership that the iranian people can live with and can support. we have a long track record of opposing any prisoners that were put in jail. >> why are you not opposing it now? >> i do not have fax here to the extent that the way it -- there may well be people enrolled in this process. they should be allowed to do what they need to do, say what they should say, to help resolve it in a peaceful way. >> this administration came under quite a bit of criticism.
>> you think? >> about the iran democracy finund. what are you doing in terms of finding democracy projects in iran at the moment? -- in terms of funding democracy projects in iran at the moment? >> in the five months that the administration has been in office, we have been reviewing and assessing all policies with iran. we have been checking in with other countries who have the same interest that we do and have the same concerns that we have about iran. i don't think we have reached any conclusions yet. we're waiting to see exactly what happens. we have expected all along that iran would have to get through this election before we understood what iran was going to do and respond accordingly >> are you seeking the advice of
american iranians for had to moderate your approach on the ground? >> since coming into office, secretary clinton has been focused on how you support democracy around the world. it is not when to be a cookie cutter approach. she is most interested in making sure that, however we support democracy and the world, human rights in the world, you have to do it understanding fully the context within which these programs and in this initiative might take place. we also want to see human rights advance. we want to see democracy advance in the world. we are working actively in a number of fronts. with respect to iran or a country like burma, how can you work most effectively on the ground in those countries to improve the political process is, to open them up to a more
full the dissipation, to make sure there is robust debate in those countries, and that you have more responsible governments and you're able to hold those governments to account. >> has the government ever adopted a cookie cutter approach to world crises? what is the point of saying that? >> i think the previous administration was very good in preaching democracy and was not necessarily very good in the actual execution of those programs. secretary clinton wants to make sure that, whatever we do around the world, is appropriate for that country and is affected. -- and is effective. >> [unintelligible]
you have demanded that a lot of this is coming from the new media. do you think you're getting an accurate enough picture to understand the news from a street protest to an actual political movement? do you know when that tipping point occurs? . in other countries, you will have international election monitors. you'd be able to see firsthand
what is going on and document actions. and now the government will respond to that. we're obviously looking at this from a distance. this is a reflection of the fact that we have had difficult and strained relationships with iran going back 30 years. that said, there are diplomats on the ground in iraq that are able to see things. they are able to see things -- is one of the reasons why we thought it was important to take advantage of the technologies that are available to us so we can at least understand and tap into the conversation of the debate that is clearly happening in iran. our ability to see into a country like iran is more limited than it is in other countries. >> if a determination is made that the tipping point has been reached and it is turning into an actual political movement, will that have an impact on your position?
>> as we have said throughout this, a resolution of this ultimately has to be made by iranians, and it needs to be done for the benefit of all iranians. we're not going to impose any final solution. this is for the government. the election needs to listen to the voice of the people. whatever result occurs, however this is resolved, it has to be done in a way that the iranian people can believe in. they believe in their government. you have had an election, and you are now on this post- election period. it is likely to continue for several days. >> a developments on the impact it would have on afghanistan? >> we hope that afghanistan is one of those areas where there
is a common interest. the united states has an interest in a stable afghanistan. iran has the same interest. going back to 2001, there was effective cooperation between the united states and iran in an effort that produced the current government. we will be waiting to see that once we get through this, that is one of the areas where we will see what iran has -- is prepared to do. we have the ministerial meeting coming up next week on the margins of that. it will be focused on afghanistan and pakistan. iran has been invited to attend that meeting. we will see if they accept. >> [unintelligible] >> i am not aware of it. >> there appears to be a significant division within the administration when it comes to darfur, and whether or not there
is a genocide occurring there. yesterday, they say they are seeing the remnants of genocide implying that the worst violence is behind the region. on monday, ambassador rice -- can you clarify where the administration stands on that? >> edit there is no question that genocide has taken place in darfur. we continue to characterize the events as genocide. we want the special envoy to do just -- scott briefly yesterday. he spent a lot of time on the ground and sudan. -- in sudan. there is less violence as a result of court it government actions as it -- and that has existed in the past. our goal is to save lives, facilitate lasting peace, and
facilitate stability and security. >> then he miss spoke yesterday. he said circumstances described genocide. yesterday, he said it was in the past. >> going back to the former secretary of state colin powell, we have made it clear that genocide happened in darfur. we can say this is clearly that the situation and are for it remains dire -- in darfur remains dire. we want to restore the humanitarian capacity. there is room in administration for a debate about the interpretation of the fact that go in that judgment. it does not change our policy now which is to focus on working as hard as we can to improve the situation and are for = = -- in
darfur. >> can you say definitively yes or no? >> it is still taking place -- is it still taking place? >> all i can say is that we characterize the events going on in dar asfur genocide. -- in darfur as genocide. >> you had a foreign minister saying that this was not genocide. it is good that it is now being clearly stated. >> i did not find a response to be particularly credible. -- i do not find that response to be particularly credible. as the general pointed out yesterday, you have urgent and the multiple challenges going on in sudan at the same time.
we recognize that in dealing with all of these challenges, we will have to deal with the government in some way. we hope that the government will, in turn, constructively work with the united states. the challenges are -- >> what is the situation in sudan at the moment? they gave the impression that everything was fairly hunky dory. >> that is an unfair characterization. from the point where the government irresponsibly kicked out and number of ngo's, we're in the process of restoring humanitarian capacity to the country. he outlined very specifically that some areas were back to
100%, and some areas are working to get back to where they were. i'd read the comments yesterday, and i think it is in its characterization to say that just because things are not less worse than they might have been a few years ago, i do not think anyone would describe the situation -- it is urgent, it is dire, and the people of sudan deserve better. >> do you expect darfur to play -- would it be on the agenda at all? >> i would go back to the general's briefing yesterday. he identified a number of challenges they are facing, but in many ways, they are interlinked. you have to focus attention and
energy on all of them if you're going to be able to resolve all of them. the focus is primarily on the challenge of the future of sudan itself. i would not be surprised if the issue of darfur is there as well. we can see the names. -- we can get you the names. >> the u.s. commission said in a statement that the indian government has denied -- we're planning to go to india this month. they said that the state department -- what is your view? >> i do not know. if we have anything, i will let you know. >> apparently are rock is performing a committee -- is forming a committee to assess
the situation of its prisoners there -- and apparently, iraq is forming a committee to assess the situation of its prisoners. is the u.s. involved in the evaluation of its prison system? >> chris hill, the ambassador to iraq, will be here at this very podium. as can that question. -- ask him that question. >> is the u.s. -- the meeting between the two presidents, has it become a major issue? are there any plans for bringing together the five parties in some way to discuss where to go next in terms of dealing with the situation? >> i would say that first and foremost, it was the very close collaboration among the five parties, if you will, that
helped produce the resolution in the un that we are now working hard to implement. i think that collaboration going forward will certainly continue. it is encouraging that all of these nations, china, russia, japan, south korea, and the united states are sending the same as in -- the same message to north korea. when we have the next high-level meeting on that, we will let you know. >> there was an attack on the leading members of somalia today -- sorry. >> i am wondering if north korea is starting to close out its foreign bank accounts. are they drawn large amounts of cash from foreign banks? the new know anything about this? >> i do not.
-- do you know anything about this? >> i do not. they will find ways to put additional financial pressure on north korea. we have used those tools in the past. it would not surprise me if north korea has taken action in response. >> [unintelligible] are you designing the same kind of regime that you had against the sanctions, the recensions you had against iran? financial banks, and things like that? >> there is a process where we are looking at how to best implements the council resolution. in terms of how we're reviewing, we're still in the process. >> isn't that separate though? >> of the separate entities that are responsible here.
we have the ability to work on a bilateral basis. we want to put pressure on their military capability, tried to restrict their ability to export arms around the world, and the technologies were most concerned about. whenever we can find any way of opportunities to provide additional financial pressure -- >> your answer is yes, then? >> we have successfully used financial tools in the past to get north korea's attention, and we will continue to do that. >> a japanese newspaper reported overnight that the next long- range missile that north korea launches is likely to be headed toward -- in the direction of hawaii. it did say that it probably would not hit the main islands because it would be out of range.
you have any further information on what indications you're getting about the north korean plans for this missile launch? the you have any more specific concerns about potential of a missile? >> we have seen this movie, where we are not sure there should be a sequel. all we know at this point is, if the north koreans fire of another missile, it will be a mistake. >> obviously, you do not want to see a missile go off if there is a danger that it will hit someone or something. >> their aim is not exactly been their strong suit so far. >> doesn't really affect your diplomatic corps s -- it does it really affects your diplomatic course? >> what goes up must comeow