Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton met with Irish Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Eamon Gilmore at the Department of State on March 18. Secretary Clinton welcomed the new Tanaiste to Washington and highlighted the strength of the U.S.-Ireland alliance. The pair discussed the current situation in Japan, the passage of UN Security Council Resolution 1973, and ongoing peace efforts in Northern Ireland. The Secretary also commended the Deputy Prime Minister for Ireland's support for ending global hunger.
"[W]e had an excellent discussion. And there was a broad agreement, as you might guess, between two such strong friends and allies. I'm sorry I had to spend St. Patrick's Day away from the celebrations, but I am delighted that we have so many common goals for the continuing close cooperation between our two countries.
"We are obviously following what's happening in Japan on a minute-by-minute basis. Ireland very generously has contributed to the appeal for humanitarian assistance. We are also grateful for the offer of Irish experts to assist in dealing with this. As both Ireland and the United States know, Japan has been very generous in the past during others' times of need, and we are responding.
"The conversation that Eamon and I had about Libya began with the passage of the Security Council Resolution 1973, which provides authority for the international community to take enforcement actions to protect civilians in Libya. The Libyan people have called for international assistance, and this resolution paves the way for that call to be answered. Colonel Qadhafi's refusal to hear the repeated calls up until now to halt violence against his own people has left us with no other choice but to pursue this course of action. While this resolution is an important step, it is only that -- an important step. We and our partners will continue to explore the most effective measures to end this crisis.
"We talked at length about the Irish Government's extraordinary support for ending global hunger, an area that we are going to continue to work on together. We will be hopefully traveling to Africa at some point to highlight the joint project, the 1,000 Days campaign to improve maternal and child nutrition. We also appreciate greatly Ireland's support of the Cookstove Alliance, a very important initiative that we kicked off last September and which has such potential to protect women and children from death and illness by toxic smoke and to protect the environment.
"And finally, of course, we talked about the ongoing peace efforts in Northern Ireland. We commend everyone on the progress that has been made. I will meet later today with Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness. We are absolutely committed to work together to give a consistent message of support that the path to peace is the only path."
You can read the Secretary's complete remarks here.
Related Content:Behind the Scenes: “1,000 Days: Change a Life, Change the Future”, Change a Life, Change the Future: Promoting Child Nutrition, and
Clean Cookstoves for Healthier People and a Healthier Planet