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Remarks at the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue Signing Ceremony

Remarks

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Liberian President Sirleaf
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
January 15, 2013

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, welcome to the Treaty Room. I am delighted to have this occasion, once again, to host President Sirleaf, a very good partner over many years, and especially, I would say, over the last four years it has been a great personal pleasure for me to work with her to strengthen that partnership between the United States and Liberia. And I also am grateful, as well, for her personal friendship.Today, we are taking another important step to deepen the partnership between our nations and to support Liberia as it continues down the path of democratic and economic reform. The partnership dialogue we are about to sign will expand the cooperation between our countries and ensure high-level engagement for years to come.

This agreement establishes working groups in three key areas – first, agriculture and food security; helping Liberia’s farmers use their land more effectively and get their crops to markets more efficiently will be critical to improving the health and prosperity of people throughout Liberia. This working group will review progress under the Feed the Future Initiative, look for new opportunities to attract private investment in the agriculture sector, and recommend policies to promote food security and better nutrition.

Second, energy and power infrastructure. We know that access to affordable, reliable energy is essential to creating jobs and sparking growth that helps to build a strong economy. So we will take stock of outstanding needs for the generation, transmission, and distribution of energy, promote a regulatory environment that’s friendly to new investments in energy, and look for ways to accelerate the development of a well-governed and inclusive energy sector.

And finally, we want to look at human development with a real emphasis on creating more economic opportunity for the people of Liberia to expand access to education and employment so that many more Liberians have a chance to not only better themselves and their families, but make a contribution to their nation.

I think it is more than fair to say that this last decade has been a success story for Liberia. The people of Liberia have emerged from a time of violence and lawlessness and have made tremendous commitments to both economic and political reform. The United States has stood by Liberia during this challenging process, but I think it is also more than fair to say it was aided considerably by the leadership, the determination of a woman who understood in every fiber of her being what was at stake. And so, Madame President, let me, on behalf of the United States, thank you for the great progress under your leadership, pledge our continuing support and partnership and friendship to you and to the people of your country. (Applause.)

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: Secretary of State Clinton, members of the Administration, ladies and gentlemen, I am honored to be here today for several reasons. First, I feel privileged to have been invited to the State Department this week, one of the last weeks that you, Madame Secretary, will be in office, to say thank you for all that you have done for Liberia and the Liberian people, to say thank you for always being there for Liberia.

Second, for me personally, it was important to be here today to see that you have fully recovered – (laughter) – from your recent illness, to embrace you, and to let you know that all of Liberia prayed for your speedy recovery.

Third, I have always seen Liberia’s progress as underpinned by its special relationship with the United States. The launching today of the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue is an historic achievement, one that will cement the strategic cooperation between our two countries for generations to come regardless of the occupants of the White House or the Executive Mansion. Dear friends, today for us marks an historic day for the Government and people of Liberia, the fulfillment of a wish first articulated last June for the institutionalization of the longstanding bilateral relationship between Liberia and the United States of America.

Just seven months ago, we made the rounds among congressional and U.S. Government officials. We put forward proposals on how the United States could work with Liberia as a partner to consolidate its gains. One proposal called for the establishment of a joint United States-Liberia bi-national commission established (inaudible) in the 1960s, which aimed to ensure that the partnership would endure for 50 years or more.

I recall vividly when I made the case to you, Madame Secretary, your support was instantaneous. You assured me that you would figure out how to embed such a relationship in our governments and countries, and here we are today for the signing of the statement of intent, Liberia’s chance with the United States as a reliable partner in the region. The U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue would allow our two countries to look at our relationship strategically with a view towards the long term and focus on those areas that encourage broad-based economic growth, including agriculture and food security, energy and power infrastructure, and human development.

We look forward to carrying out the first meeting of the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue under the leadership of Secretary of State designate, Senator John Kerry, who also has been an essential supporter of Liberia during his long service on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, including his time as chairman. We recognize that this will not just be a job for our two governments, but also for the business communities of both countries and other stakeholders in Liberia.

Madame Secretary, I’m especially pleased that we were recently declared eligible for compact status by the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Coming just two years after being awarded a threshold program and seven years after the reestablishment of democracy in Liberia, this is one of Liberia’s proudest achievements. I would like to recognize the presence here of MCC President Daniel Yohannes and to promise you that we will deliver a compact program that will be comprehensive and resulting.

I take this opportunity to thank Assistant Secretary of State Johnnie Carson for his steadfast leadership on Africa policy over the past four years. Ambassador Carson, we wish for you the best and hope you will continue to find a way to stay engaged with us in Liberia. We also congratulate President Barack Obama on his forthcoming inauguration to a second term of office. We trust that we can count on him and on Africa’s continued support under his leadership to Liberia and to Africa.

Madam Secretary, Hillary – (laughter) – you’ve been a true friend of Liberia and to me personally. We are pleased that in the history of our bilateral relationship, which spans more than a century and a half, you made two trips to Liberia while in office as Secretary of State. You have supported our country’s progress, championed our political process, and pushed to settle Liberia’s external debt. As we bid you farewell, I remain convinced that in this era of economic challenge, history will show that your support and the investment of the U.S. Government and the American people in Liberia will return significant dividends.

We’ll continue to guard the peace, promote reconciliation, build strong democratic institutions, and show good governance and transparency, and encourage broad-based economic development. We will continue to strive to be a post-conflict success story. For that, Madam Secretary, is America’s success also. Thank you. (Applause.)

MODERATOR: Secretary Clinton and President Sirleaf are signing a statement of intent between the United States and the Republic of Liberia to establish a partnership dialogue. The U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue will ensure sustained high-level bilateral engagement on issues of mutual interest.

(The document was signed.) (Applause.)

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thanks to everyone who helped work on this. I see a lot of the faces from across the State Department. Let’s get a picture with everybody coming up behind us, perhaps.

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Remarks With Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Before Their Meeting

Remarks

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
June 8, 2012

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, it’s indeed a great pleasure to once again welcome the president of Liberia, a partner and friend to so many here in the United States, to me as well personally. President Sirleaf has demonstrated great commitment and absolute devotion to her country following a very terrible conflict that did so much damage to the people of Liberia. And the United States will continue to work with her and with her government and the Liberian people as they make progress into the future.

So Madam President, again, welcome.

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: Thank you very much, Secretary Clinton. As we start a new administration in Liberia, I’ve come on behalf of the Liberian people to say how much we appreciate the partnership, the support we’ve received, that has enabled us to make so much progress in these past six years.

As we go forward with this administration, we’d like to see the partnership strengthen. We want to make sure that all the things we’ve done now translate into improving the welfare of our people. That’s our new agenda.

And I’ll be participating in the USAID conference on Frontiers in Development where new innovative and creative things financing under these partnerships will be discussed. I bring with me some members of our legislature so they too can have the opportunity to exchange views and to go back strengthened as they play their role in collaborating with the administration for the good of our people. Thank you so much.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you.

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She has been in the Ivory Coast since about mid-day our time, but earlier today, Mme. Secretary led the U.S. delegation to the second inauguration of Nobel laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as President of Liberia. We see her arriving with U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (C) arrives at the arrive at the inauguraion ceremony of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in Monrovia, on January 16, 2012. Clinton arrived in Liberia ahead of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's inauguration for a second six-year term in office. Some 30 heads of state are expected to attend the swearing-in of Sirleaf, a joint winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011, in the $1.2 million (900,000 euro) inauguration which will include a massive parade in the capital and festivities around the country. AFP PHOTO/STR (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)

US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton () sits next to Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade (C) during the inauguration ceremony for the President of Liberia for another term on January 16, 2012 in Monrovia. Liberia's Nobel peace laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was sworn in Monday in a lavish $1.2 million ceremony and called for reconciliation after her reelection in disputed polls divided the nation. With US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in attendance, the 73-year-old grandmother took the oath administered by the country's Chief Justice Johnnie Lewis as thousands looked on from the grounds of the capitol building. AFP PHOTO / STRINGER (Photo credit should read STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (seated on L) meets with Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (2nd R) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Monrovia January 16, 2012. Clinton is in Liberia to attend the second presidential inauguration of Sirleaf, Africa's first woman president, later in the day. REUTERS/Larry Downing (LIBERIA - Tags: POLITICS)

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Meeting With the Staff and Families of Embassy Monrovia

Remarks

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Embassy Monrovia
Monrovia, Liberia
January 16, 2012

Date: 01/16/2012 Description: U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, left, attends a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new U.S. Embassy with U.S. Ambassador to Liberia Linda Thomas-Greenfield in Monrovia Monday, Jan. 16, 2012. Clinton attended the second presidential inauguration of Africa's first woman president, Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Larry Downing, Pool) © AP Image

AMBASSADOR THOMAS-GREENFIELD: Good afternoon. It’s great to see all of you here in this building. I have one simple task: to introduce the person who needs no introduction, our boss, your boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Oh, thank you so much. Well, I have to say, this is a doubly blessed occasion, to be able to attend the inauguration and then come for the official ribbon cutting on the new embassy chancery. And I’ve had just a quick look around. I think this is going to make lives a little easier, workspaces a little more expansive, and enable you to do the important work you are doing on behalf of this very significant relationship between the United States and the people of our country and the government and people of Liberia.

This new compound is a testament to the work you do, and it is a symbol of America’s lasting commitment to our partners today. We are committed to standing with the people of Liberia as you, as they, continue their important journey, reconciling political and ethnic differences, strengthening democracy, bringing prosperity and opportunity to people, particularly young people.

So Ambassador, let me thank you for your leadership here, and I know that you and your husband, Lafayette, who is there, have served with great commitment and enthusiasm on behalf of this relationship. I also want to thank the DCM Karl Albrecht and the Political/Economic Counselor Bill McCulla and everyone else who worked so hard to make this visit possible. I know that the local staff has been particularly helpful. You’ve been cutting through red tape, and I appreciate that, and now I’ll be cutting through (inaudible). (Laughter.)

I was also pleased to be here for the second inauguration of President Sirleaf, because I’ve known Ellen for a long time. I have a great deal of admiration and appreciation for the work she is doing, along with her other colleagues in government. And as she did at the end of the ceremony today, in recognizing in her speech and in the invitation to the opposition leaders to come forward, there has to be a recognition that in elections sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. I happen to know that for a fact. (Laughter.) I have done both of them, and I think it’s important that the lessons that we have learned over more than 235 years of trying to perfect our union be understood by other democracies and countries that are really making such strides.

I often am struck by how unusual people think it is that after I ran so hard against President Obama and he won he then asked me to serve with him. And people all over the world say, “Well, how did that happen? Why did he ask you? Why did you say yes?” And I said, “Well, because we both love our country.” And I think what you saw in President Sirleaf’s speech today – (applause) – is that same set of values. What does it mean to be a patriot? Well, it doesn’t mean that you always win. It means that you put the common good in front of your own personal and political interests. And yes, it is important to continue to express opposing opinions. We do that quite vigorously back home. But at the end of the day you have to agree upon certain values and then work together to fulfill them.

Now, many of you here today did so much on behalf of this election. Some volunteered as observers. I know that many of you were standing right alongside ECOWAS and African Union observers in a show of support for the elections and democracy. You were talking to poll workers, you were helping people get their ballots and find out where they were on the voter registration roles.

But our work with Liberia goes far beyond support for the elections. We are working so hard on security issues, and I’m delighted that General Ham, the commander of AFRICOM, is with us today. General, thank you so much for being here. (Applause.) And our USAID and Peace Corps colleagues are working so hard on healthcare and education and so much else. (Applause.)

And let’s face it, some of you have to drive roads that have been a little impassable. I was looking at the picture in the newspaper that was passed out about President Sirleaf and plowing through roads that were flooded and walking over logs, along with our ambassador, to get to places that were not so easily accessible. And you do that all the time, and I am grateful and appreciative.

I also want to say a special word of gratitude to our local staff. Now, I’m well aware that Secretaries comes and go, ambassadors come and go, DCMs come and go, political officers come and go, the counselors – everyone comes and goes, except the local staff. They stay year, after year, after year. And boy, do we need you. We cannot do this work without you and your body of knowledge and experience.

I’d especially like to recognize Isaac Jefferson. Isaac? Is Isaac here today? Isaac Jefferson as a financial assistant. (Applause.) Mr. Jefferson has been working with us for 21 years. And Adama Konate. Adama has been a driver for 36 years. (Applause.) Thank you very much, and all of you.

And I also want to embarrass Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield by acknowledging, in front of all of you, the enormous contribution that she has made during her time here to Embassy Monrovia. Not only did she spearhead our efforts to support the National Election Commission, but she’s been a real champion for the rights of women and children, and that’s an issue very close to my heart as well. (Applause.) And she has spoken out against corruption, which is an issue I spoke with the president about earlier, that it’s one of the roadblocks to greater prosperity here in Liberia. And I thank you for your work on that, Ambassador. Of course, it’s something we deal with all over the world, so we need good ideas. We want Liberia to help lead the way in how you can eliminate the cancer of corruption, which just zaps people’s energies and undermines their initiative.

Well, now I think it’s time to inaugurate, so to speak, this new compound. This space is fabulous. I love the hanging sculptures. I know you’ll have time and now space for many more public events here. I’m told that the DCM can now get rid of the two plastic buckets that he’s been keeping in his office for those time when rainwater drips through the ceiling. (Laughter.) And under this new roof, you’re going to be able to come together with a single mission, no matter where you are coming to us from, that’s not (inaudible), because this is not just about the State Department, USAID.

It’s a whole-of-government effort, because that’s what it takes to support this extraordinary journey that Liberia is on, and we’re going to do everything we can to make sure they get to the destination of democracy, prosperity, peace and security safely. Thank you all very much. (Applause.)

 

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On our Martin Luther King Day, Secretary Clinton is leading the U.S. delegation to the second inauguration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia, a country founded by freed American slaves.  The capital was named for President Monroe.   Mme.  Secretary is on a two-day whirlwind trip, stopping in four countries.

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From the en route background briefing:

 

Background Briefing en route Liberia

Special Briefing

Senior Administration Official, Office of the Spokesperson
ERT Monrovia, Liberia
January 15, 2012

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE:  Our first stop in Liberia is to attend the second inauguration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as president of Liberia. This is an extraordinarily important occasion because of the fact that Liberia is now experiencing nearly a decade of peace after 15 years of enormous civil conflict in which that country was destroyed by two leaders – Charles Taylor, who is currently being indicted by the ICC, and by the late Samuel Doe. Fifteen years of violence was ended in 2003. Ellen Sirleaf Johnson was elected president in 2005, and she has now been reelected last year in November to a second term.

Liberia has been a close friend of the United States for many, many years, a country established by freed American slaves in 1848, and is probably as close as any country in Africa ever will be to being a American colony. But this is special because Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has done a remarkable job over the last four and a half years of rebuilding her country, promoting reconciliation, and beginning the difficult task of reestablishing one of Africa’s weakest infrastructures. It’s also important because Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is the only female president in Africa, and she was, last year, awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her reconstruction work.

This is an opportunity for the United States to express our appreciation and praise for the outstanding work that she has done over the last five years to acknowledge the success of her recent election, to applaud her for her Nobel Prize, and to help encourage the reconstruction to continue, reconciliation and reconstruction that is going on there. You all may remember that the Secretary last visited Monrovia in August of 2009. This is the second trip by the Secretary to Monrovia since she came into office three years ago.

Our second stop is to Cote d’Ivoire, where we have one of Africa’s newest and most dynamic presidents, Alassane Ouattara, in power. Cote d’Ivoire, as many of you know, was the most important country in Francophone Africa. It was the jewel in the crown of the French colonial system, and up until a decade ago, rivaled Nigeria and Ghana as one of the three leading economic powerhouses in West Africa. A decade ago, after failed elections and the assassination of the sitting president, the country went into a deep political spiral. And for a decade, one leader dominated the political agenda in an authoritarian and frequently brutal manner. He is now in The Hague being indicted for his actions.

But you may recall in November of (inaudible), Alassane Ouattara actually won the election for the presidency, but Laurent Gbagbo, the old and now arrested president, refused to acknowledge those results, although they were certified by the United Nations, by the Carter Center, by the European Union, and also by ECOWAS leaders in West Africa. For four months, four and a half months, we along with others in the international community tried to get Mr. Gbagbo to leave. President Obama directly engaged in this effort himself, as did Secretary Clinton, who actually provided a way out for Mr. Gbagbo, but he did not, in fact, accept it.

The UN as well as French troops ultimately removed Mr. Gbagbo from power and put in place Alassane Ouattara, who is the current president. In the short period that he has been in office, he has helped to restore some of the country’s economy, reopen the ports, started the process of rebuilding some of the roads, and moving the country’s agriculture, mostly cocoa, out to markets. President Obama had an opportunity on July 29, 2011 to invite Alassane Ouattara to the White House along with other – four other – three other Francophone African presidents to demonstrate U.S. support for democracy and political reconciliation.

The Secretary’s trip to Cote d’Ivoire will, in fact, underscore our commitment and the President’s commitment to strengthening democratic institutions, standing by political leaders who are prepared to work for democracy, and to improve human rights and economic opportunities. This will be the first visit by a Secretary of State to Cote d’Ivoire since George Shultz was here in 1986 – a long time, but it is, again, an opportunity to underscore our support for democracy and for conflict reconciliation – post-conflict reconciliation.

[snip]

I will just mention that the Secretary, while she is in Cote d’Ivoire, will in fact have meetings with President Ouattara and his senior government officials, but she will also participate in a Cote post-conflict reconciliation event with a number of young political leaders who are across the political divide in that country.

The third stop is going to be to Lome, Togo. Again, Togo has a interesting political history and background. From 1967 to 2005, Togo was dominated by a single individual, one of Africa’s longest serving rulers, President Eyadema, who was, in fact, one of the first coup leaders in Africa. He was – he died in 2005. There were hasty elections – not so very good ones – which brought in his son to power, President Faure. Those elections were accompanied by violence. Since then, there have been a second set of presidential elections in March and April of 2010. Those elections were substantially better than the first election, and in fact, represented only the third time that the country had had anything that resembled elections in a multiparty process.

President Faure has – is determined to break away from the history of his father. He is determined to put in place a strong reform-minded government – one that is democratic, multiparty, and which opens up the country. This will be an opportunity for Secretary Clinton to encourage President Faure to continue along a reformist path, to continue to promote political reconciliation in his country, and to speed on economic reforms that will embrace a larger portion of the country.

This will be a historic visit. No president and no secretary of State have ever visited Togo before. This will be the first time that we will have a visit of a U.S. official at this time.

Equally important for us, many of you know that in January of this year, Togo became a nonpermanent member of the UN Security Council. It will be on the council for approximately two years. It’s an opportunity to develop stronger relations with them as they serve their tenure on the Security Council.

[snip]

MODERATOR: Do you want – Cape Verde, or you want to do that on the way to Cape Verde?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: We’ll do that one on the way to Cape Verde.

MODERATOR: Okay.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: I could just say that the Secretary is going to briefly make a stop in Cape Verde, where she will meet with the prime minister. Cape Verde is one of Africa’s strongest and most successful democracy. It is, along with Mauritius and Botswana, a premier democratic performer – a multiparty political system, good human rights records, but more important than anything else, it has effectively utilized its foreign assistance probably better than any other African state. It was, in fact, the first country to be given a second MCC grant after effectively utilizing its money well during the first grant.

Many of you – some of you who were, again, with us in August of ’09 know that we met there with the president, the prime minister, and foreign minister during this Secretary’s first visit to Africa. Cape Verde has probably done more than any other country to transform its economy and open up opportunities for its people. And so it’s a good friend and a good partner and a strong multiparty democracy.

 

 

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Secretary Clinton To Travel to Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, and Cape Verde

Press Statement

Victoria Nuland
Department Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 13, 2012

Secretary Clinton will travel to Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, and Cape Verde on January 16 – 17, 2012 to demonstrate U.S. commitment to post-conflict return to peace, good governance, and economic development as well as to emphasize U.S. focus on democratization.

While in Liberia, Secretary Clinton will attend President Sirleaf’s inauguration and preside over the ribbon-cutting of the New U.S. Embassy Compound in Monrovia. In Cote d’Ivoire, she will meet with President Ouattara to showcase our support for national reconciliation and strengthening democratic institutions following successful legislative elections in December 2011. In the first visit of a Secretary of State to Togo, Secretary Clinton will meet President Faure to demonstrate U.S. support for Togo’s democratic progress and economic reforms and to congratulate Togo on its recent election to the United Nations Security Council, where it holds a non-permanent seat for 2012 and 2013. In Cape Verde, Secretary Clinton will meet Prime Minister Neves to discuss cooperation on regional issues like counternarcotics, good governance, sound economic policies, and Cape Verde’s second Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact.

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Elections in Liberia

Press Statement

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
November 15, 2011

 


On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I want to congratulate the Liberian people for exercising their right to vote in last week’s presidential and legislative elections. These historic elections are important milestones on Liberia’s path toward democratic reconciliation. The United States congratulates President Sirleaf on her re-election and we will continue to work with her and all elected officials to advance democracy, and promote peace and prosperity.

The United States commends the National Elections Commission for conducting free, fair, and transparent elections. We applaud the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union and others for sending observers to monitor the elections, as well as the UN Mission in Liberia for promoting security during the electoral process.

The violence on November 7th marred this otherwise peaceful process, so we welcome the creation of a Special Independent Commission of Inquiry to investigate the incident. We are also deeply disappointed by the Congress for Democratic Change’s decision to boycott the run-off election in an attempt to delegitimize the election. We urge all political parties to respect the election results and resolve their differences peacefully.

The United States is a long standing friend of the Liberian people and we are committed to their future. Congratulations on this momentous occasion.

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Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Hillary Rodham Clinton

Congratulations to Female Nobel Peace Laureates

Press Statement

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
October 7, 2011

I am delighted to send heartfelt congratulations to Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Yemeni activist Tawakkul Karman and Liberian peace activist Leymah Roberta Gbowee for the prestigious honor of sharing this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. They are shining examples of the difference that women can make and the progress they can help achieve when given the opportunity to make decisions about the future of their societies and countries.

The unflinching courage, strength and leadership of these women to build peace, advance reconciliation, and defend the rights of fellow citizens in their own countries provide inspiration for women’s rights and human progress everywhere. This recognition of their extraordinary accomplishments reflects the efforts of many other women who are promoting peace and security in their countries and communities. I want to commend the Nobel Committee for recognizing the powerful role women are playing in building peace and ending conflict around the world.

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Remarks With Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf


Remarks

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
June 23, 2011




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Remarks with President Johnson Sirleaf, posted with vodpod

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, it is, as always, a great personal pleasure for me to welcome the president of Liberia. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has provided not only very productive, positive leadership for her own country but has been a leader in Africa and beyond on a range of issues. And I’m looking forward to our conversation today on the agenda between us bilaterally and how we can work together regionally and globally.

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: I’m glad to be here once again, Secretary Clinton, to express to you and through you to the government and people of the United States our appreciation for the support Liberia has received, to say to you that we’ve made progress and that we’re now moving ahead in our program of democracy in this particular year, and we want you to know that we are determined that Liberia will become America and the world’s post-conflict success story. We are well on the way toward achieving that objective.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much, President.

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: Thank you all.

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Remarks With Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Before Their Meeting

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
May 27, 2010

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, it is such a delight and indeed a continuing honor to welcome Liberia’s president here to the State Department, someone who is not only doing an extraordinary job of leading her country and dealing with the accumulated challenges that she inherited upon becoming president, but is also, through her leadership in West Africa, playing a very important role in helping to deal with the problems that go beyond her borders but which affect her people.
So, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, welcome once again.
PRESIDENT JOHNSON SIRLEAF: Thank you very much, Secretary Clinton. I’m here to report to you on the progress we have made since our last meeting on behalf of the Liberian people, to express our thanks and appreciation for the support we have received from you personally and from the government in general. We hope that this day will solidify, once again, and consolidate a partnership which we so much enjoy with the United States and the people of this country.
SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much, Madam President.
PRESIDENT JOHNSON SIRLEAF: Thank you.
SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you all.

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