(Washington, January 6, 1998). “We strongly believe that the Administration should go beyond the formula which says that the doors to NATO remain open to all,” noted a letter submitted to Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott during a meeting with the representatives of the Central and East European Coalition (“CEEC”) today. “The time has come, we feel, to make it clear that the second round of enlargement will follow,” added the letter.
In addition to NATO enlargement to include Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic, the CEEC raised issues concerning the Baltic Charter, Partnership for Peace, Russia and its neighbors, the Caucuses and the need to have an even-handed policy toward the democratic parties of the new Central and Eastern European democracies. Deputy Secretary Talbott, who has been generous with his time before, agreed to continue the dialogue with the CEEC on these significant issues
Other State Department officials attending the one-hour meeting included Jeremy Rosner, Special Assistant to the President and Secretary of State for NATO Enlargement, Ronald Asmus, Deputy Secretary for Canadian and European Affairs, James Holmes, Coordinator for East European Assistance, Andrew Silski, Desk Officer for Iceland and Assistant Desk Officer for the Baltic States and other State Department officials.
Frank Koszorus, Jr. of the Hungarian American Coalition coordinated the CEEC’s presentation and questions to the State Department officials.