- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 30, 2004

‘A true diplomat’

Algerian Ambassador Idriss Jazairy is collecting his farewells, as he prepares for his new post as his country’s United Nations representative in Geneva. However, few farewells will get a permanent place in Washington history like the one delivered by a close friend in Congress.

Rep. Joe Pitts, a member of the House International Relations Committee, read his goodbye message into the Congressional Record this week, praising Mr. Jazairy as a “true diplomat” who “builds bridges and facilitates reconciliation.”

“It has been a privilege working with this gentleman as Algeria’s ambassador to the United States for the past four years,” the Pennsylvania Republican said.

“His eloquent professionalism, great confidence and his deep care for his family and country have all been reflected in his life and service here.”

Mr. Jazairy, with his white hair and tailored suits, cut a dashing figure at embassy receptions or in the halls of Congress.

He also had the difficult duty of overseeing the interests of Iraq under Saddam Hussein. Algeria assumed the role of “protecting power” after Saddam broke relations with the United States during the 1991 Persian Gulf war.

“Ambassador Jazairy is a true diplomat,” Mr. Pitts said. “He builds bridges and facilitates reconciliation. He has been an eloquent spokesman for his country and the causes of peace and goodwill in the world.

“He represents his nation’s interests with great dignity and has been a wonderful man to work with and call a friend. We will miss him.”

Hurricane relief

The United States is pumping money into the Caribbean faster than relief workers can pump out floodwaters.

State Department spokesman Richard Boucher yesterday gave an update on the relief that will bring the total to about $12 million, with most going to Haiti, which suffered the worst devastation.

“The situation in Haiti, as we all know, has been made much worse by the flooding and the mudslides, and so there’s been proportionally more money that we’ve spent in Haiti,” he said.

U.S. relief teams are working in Gonaives, one of the worst-hit cities in Haiti. About $2 million has been earmarked for reconstruction projects in that city. An additional $2.6 million has been allocated for the whole country, and $5 million more is authorized.

Mr. Boucher said the United States has spent $900,000 for Grenada, $694,000 for Jamaica, $284,000 for the Bahamas and $50,000 for the Dominican Republic.

“We’ve had four flights down [to Grenada] as of last week, and there’s additional money that’s going in and being spent now on things like electrical systems and various transport and other assessments,” he said.

Two relief flights have brought fresh water and medical supplies to Jamaica, he said.

“So the total will come eventually to … $12 million available, spent or available for spending,” Mr. Boucher said, adding that President Bush has asked Congress for an additional $50 million in emergency hurricane relief.

Police aid

The U.S. ambassador to Indonesia this week signed an agreement to give the nation more than $9 million in assistance to train its police.

Ambassador Ralph Boyce announced the grant in a ceremony with the head of Indonesia’s police, Da’i Bachtiar.

Mr. Boyce said Washington has given more than $36 million in the past four years to help Indonesia transform its police from a military operation to a civilian law enforcement agency.

About half of the latest grant will aid marine police operations. More than $1 million will go to forensic functions, and the rest to projects that include computer crime and anti-corruption operations, the U.S. Embassy said.

Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax 202/832-7278 or e-mail [email protected]

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide