We operate obviously within a certain political framework. Much
of the assistance is tnerefore related to helping to facilitate the
Middle East peace process, as well as to stimulate economic growth
and development in the region. There is a very definite political
framework to the assistance that we provide.
While all the countries in the region are certainly very different
and very distinct, there is a common thread, a similarity of devel-
opment problems in the region related to the generally statist
economies and movement toward market-oriented economies, lack
of an abundance of natural resources, a full range of health prob-
lems, and excessive population growth, to which our economic as-
sistance is directed.
We have organized our assistance around five major themes as
a way to focus and concentrate our assistance for maximum im-
First, we are trying to expand and to help mÂ£ike more efficient
private sector activity in each and all of the countries of the region.
Second, we are trying to work with the nations of that area on
more efficient and more accountable governance, so there is more
popular participation in political and economic decisionmaking so
that the governments are more responsible to the will of the peo-
Thirdly, because of the very high population growth rates in
many of the countries, we are assisting those countries through the
increased use of contraceptive family planning methods.
Fourth, because there are so many health problems, health prob-
lems which in this country we tend to forget about because they
have been eradicated, but which are prevalent in the region, we
work with many of the countries on the increased use of effective
maternal and child health care services.
And fifth, in the environmental area, the key environmental
problem in a dry-land area like the Near East is the limitation on
the quantity ana quality of water resources.
With that as the major themes of our assistance, let me touch
briefly upon what we have been doing and what we propose to do
with the fiscal year 1994 appropriation in the specific countries.
The largest program in the region, of course, is Israel. We have
been providing cash transfer assistance to Israel to facilitate the
Middle East peace process and to address some of the balance of
payments, budgetary, and debt-related issues for Israel. This year,
as I believe you are aware, we also initiated special loan guaran-
tees for Israel, taking note of the humanitarian efforts that Israel
has been providing in receiving refugees from the Soviet Union,
Ethiopia and other areas.
The next-largest program is Egypt, where assistance is provided
in the form of programs and projects to promote economic growth,
improve the productivity and quality of life of Egypt's people, and
strengthen democratic participation in Egyptian institutions and
society. There have been successes in recent years in terms of the
liberalization of Egyptian economic policies in the form of trade lib-
eralization, the beginnings of privatization, price liberalization â€”
eliminating price controls â€” generally reducing the role of govern-
In health, we estimate for example, the lives of 80,000 children
are saved each year through oral rehydration therapy and inocula-
tion programs. Egypt has done well in providing women and fami-
lies a choice in terms of the numbers and spacing of children they
Infrastructure, using gpreat U.S. technology, has been provided in
terms of water, sewage treatment, telephone systems and other
physical infrastructure. We propose with the fiscal year 1994 ap-
propriation to continue economic policy reform assistance, releasing
such assistance based upon actual performÂ£ince, coordinating our
assistance with the World Bank, with the IMF and with the other
We also propose to continue the very successful programs in fam-
ily planning and child survival, new funding programs in urban
water, waste water, energy and telecommunications.
In Jordan we have been providing assistance in a variety of
areas, specifically private-sector growth, water and health and fam-
ily planning. Assistance has resumed following the Gulf crisis, and
many economic liberalization programs are under way. We are
working in concert with the World Bank and other donors in that
Lebanon, after 16 years of terrible civil strife, appears to be
achieving political stability. The economy still has many difficul-
ties. We nave been providing assistance through private voluntary
orgÂ£inizations and other nongovernmental groups, to provide relief
and rehabilitation to the people of Lebanon. We would continue
that assistance in Lebanon with the fiscal year 1994 appropriation.
In Oman, where we have a special security relationship linked
to the use of the military bases in the region, we have been provid-
ing, and propose to continue providing assistance for water treat-
ment in Muscat, the capital, and another major city. We will also
fund public sector training to improve the quality of the services
provided by the government and begin some family planning activi-
ties in the area.
The West Bank and Gaza program has been going on for a num-
ber of years, showing American concern for the plight of the Pal-
estinian people. We have been providing assistance through Amer-
ican private voluntary organizations in such areas as training, ag-
riculture, health care and construction of municipal infrastructure.
We propose for the fiscal year 1994 appropriation to continue such
In order to improve upon management, we are focusing efforts in
three areas: agricultural and industrial productivity, selected
health care, and on working with some of the institutions which
are needed in the public sector, training the people, as well as pro-
viding technical assistance in the public sector for services that are
In addition to focusing our efforts, we now have AID staff on the
ground to address some of the management concerns.
Yemen is, perhaps, the poorest country in the Near East region.
The program there has been greatly reduced because of political is-
sues related to the Gulf crisis. We are providing humanitarian as-
sistance in the areas of health and family planning, women in de-
velopment and training, and we propose to continue with that as-
A special area of activity in Yemen is democratization. Yemen
yesterday had its first multiparty elections. We do not yet have the
election returns, but AID did provide assistance to a number of
American nongovernmental organizations helping on the election
In addition to these country programs, AID funds are a number
of regional activities in the Near East to address problems across
the region. They will continue to concentrate on the environment,
governance and democracy and family planning activities. There
are special regional programs related to assisting Israel and its
Arab neighbors. There is the Middle East regional cooperation pro-
gram which has been active since the years following the Camp
David Accords. Up until 1992, the program exclusively involved the
United States, Israel and Egypt. In 1992, we involved another
country of the region, Morocco. I am particularly pleased with that
since I was the AID Director in Morocco at the time. We are look-
ing for other opportunities to involve more Arab states with Israel
on joint activities of research and development progprams.
Finally, Mr. Chairman, I would be remiss if I did not mention
that, as we do administer these programs, we are, of course, very
conscious of the fact that we are dealing with scarce budgetary re-
sources, which seem to be getting scarcer by the day. We are mak-
ing efforts not only on an agency-wide basis, but also in the Near
East Bureau, to try to improve focus and concentration and a sys-
tem to measure impact through verifiable indicators of perform-
ance. Whether it is the very large, very labor-intensive program in
Egypt, or whether it is the new programs that have just started in
the West Bank and the Gaza, where we now have staff on the
ground, we are trying to improve upon the quality of the services
provided. To do that, of course, staff and operating expense funding
That, in brief, Mr. Chairman, is an overview. And I would be
pleased now or whenever to respond to questions.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Chandler appears in the appen-
Mr. Hamilton. Thank you, Mr. Chandler. Mr. Smith, do you
have any comments?
Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, I do not have a prepared statement
this morning. I certainly do not want to imply that we do not have
important security interests in the region, but I was told that most
of the issues you wanted to discuss this morning were political in
nature, so I am here primarily as a back-up to my State Depart-
GENERAL AID REQUESTS
Mr. Hamilton. OK Very good. Let's begin with some of the aid
requests. If you look at the nscal year 1994 requests for programs
in the Middle East, I think what strikes you most forcefully is that
almost everything has been straight-lined from fiscal year 1993 to
There are a few exceptions to that, but that seems to be the rule.
Is that right?
Mr. Chandler. Certainly for the larger programs, Israel and
Egypt, yes, it is a straight-lining. For the smaller progprams there
have been some reductions.
AMERICAN schools AND HOSPITALS ABROAD
Mr. Hamilton. All right. Now, among the areas where you have
had a reduction and departed rather dramatically from the past is
the American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (ASHA) progpram. That
was funded at $30 million last fiscal year, and you are stopping it
altogether. Why do you stop that altogether?
Mr. Chandler. The administration has decided that, given the
budgetary shortages, the difficulty of trying to find resources to
maintain certain key programs such as Israel and E^rpt, and the
search for additional resources for aid to the former Soviet Union
and other areas, we simply have to establish priorities. We cannot
continue to fund everything. The proposal at this time is to elimi-
nate funding for ASHA in fiscal year 1994.
Mr. Hamilton. Is it your view, then, that the support for these
American institutions in the Middle East no longer advances U.S.
interests in the region? Or is there some reason less important
today than it has been in the past?
Mr. Chandler. I think the assistance that has been provided
through the ASHA program to such fine institutions as the Amer-
ican University of Beirut (AUB), Beirut University College, and the
American University of Cairo, has been very helpful in assisting
those individual institutions.
Again, it gets back to a question of a budgetary problem. We sim-
ply cannot do all things. There has not been any systematic evalua-
tion as to the impact of the assistance to those institutions on the
population of the regions in which they are located. We have, for
that reason, encouraged a number of those institutions to submit
proposals to us so that, in addition to the benefit going to the insti-
tution itself, there could also be more of a program reaching out
to the local population in health or training or whatever the area
In the case of AUB, we are considering a proposal for doing just
Mr. Hamilton. How are you going to fund it?
Mr. Chandler, We would fund that from monies appropriated
for Lebanon which would benefit the Lebanese people mrough the
expertise and the capacity that has been built up over the years
Mr. Hamilton. Well, this has been an extraordinary rec-
ommendation. I mean, you just cut them out altogether. I must say
it has been my impression, and I think many of my colleagues
share it, that some of these institutions have been remarkable in
presenting the American point of view in an area that we want to
advance U.S. interests. And to come in and just cut the whole pro-
gram out with one swoop is quite extraordinary.
Did you do any consulting with these institutions before you did
Mr. Chandler. We have talked to a number of them.
Mr. Hamilton. How did they react?
Mr. Chandler. Well, they were obviously upset because, in the
case of AUB, we have been providing assistance to them for a num-
ber of years.
Mr. Hamilton. You are not playing games with us here, are vou?
Just striking something out and then expecting us to put it back
in? And then claiming tnat we are busting the budget?
Mr. Chandler. No, I am not. And I am not looking to in any way
duck the question on this. But I can only address it
Mr. Lantos. Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Hamilton. Yes.
Mr. Lantos. Is the witness under oath?
Mr. Chandler. I will be, if you wish.
Mr. Hamilton. OK, I will go on.
Mr. Chandler. It is an agency-wide question. I am familiar with
it, because many of the recipients of the ASHA program are in the
Near East region. I have lived and worked with this question. But
that I believe is the agency position at the moment.
MULTILATERAL PEACE NEGOTIATIONS
Mr, Hamilton. All right. Then there is a new program here for
multilateral peace negotiations, which is $5 million. How are you
going to spend the money?
Mr. Chandler. The peace talks occur through bilateral and mul-
tilateral means. There are five technical working g^roups: water, en-
vironment, regional economic development, refugees and arms and
security. AID, thus far, has been participating in three of those
committees: water, environment, and regional economic develop-
There are a number of activities that flow out of these working
groups which bring Arab and Israeli participants together to talk
about mutual economic or development problems.
Mr, Hamilton, We are not picking up the bill, are we, for all
these delegations around town?
Mr, Chandler, No, not those. But we do fund those who go oflF
on technical activities. For example, we had a hazardous materials
workshop out in California in case there are oil spills in the region,
AID did fiind the participation
Mr, Hamilton, This money is being used for technical studies,
is that right?
Mr. Chandler. Technical assistance, training.
Mr. Hamilton. It is not being used just to host the delegations?
Mr. Chandler. No. No, it is studies such as the Gulf of
Mr. Hamilton. Is it likely that we are going to see a big expan-
sion of this program?
Mr. Chandler. The proposal to $5 million is an expansion.
Mr. Hamilton. Is it a new program?
Mr. Chandler. It is an expansion of the current progpram. We
funded activities in fiscal year 1993 to the tune of about
Mr. Hamilton. What was done in 1993?
Mr. Chandler. We would estimate about $1 million worth of ac-
tivities were done in 1993. As the talks continue, we think there
will be an expansion. We have proposed a budgetary increase to
allow for that.
Mr. Hamilton. And do you expect a growth in this item above
the $5 million?
Mr. Chandler. I do not think so at this time, but I cannot really
see that far ahead. I think we have to see what happens on the
Mr. Hamilton. Mrs. Meyers.
Mrs. Meyers. I have no questions at this time.
Mr. Hamilton. Mr. Lantos.
Mr. Lantos. Thsmk you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to ask some
questions about Jordan, if I may.
Following the Gulf War, aid to Jordan was put on hold due to
concerns about Jordanian enforcement of U.N. sanctions against
Iraq. I would like to know what your current assessment is with
respect to Jordanian compliance with U.N. sanctions against Iraq.
Mr. Chandler. The current assessment of the Department of
State is that Jordan is complying with the U.N. sanctions against
Iraq. This is something whicn the Department of State, and Mr.
Djerejian when he arrives, can confirm â€” ^has been monitoring very
carefully â€” and, of course, out in Jordan. With that in mind, the De-
partment of State has proposed that we proceed with the fiscal
year 1992 carryover assistance which was put on hold.
We obligated $35 million of assistance for water projects and
other technical activities. We hope to proceed with a second
tranche that was put on hold, as well, in consultation with the
Mr. Lantos. It is your testimony, Mr. Chandler, that Jordan is
not purchasing any oil from Iraq at the present time?
Mr. Chandler. I do not have the answer to that question, sir.
Mr. Lantos. The man who does just walked in, so we will let
him sit down.
Mr. Chandler. Good timing.
Mr. Lantos. Good timing.
Mr. Secretary, you came at the right moment.
Mr. Djerejian. Grood morning.
Mr. Lantos. The question is, is Jordan in full compliance with
U.N. sanctions vis-a-vis Iraq?
Mr, Djerejian. Congressman Lantos, as you know, we have been
following Jordan's compliance with the sanctions very closely. And
I would like to add that we have also been keeping tnis committee
fully informed on this issue on a, if I can say on a real-time basis.
And we are assured, Congressman, that Jordan is complying fully
with the sanctions regime against Iraq.
We had some information recently, as we briefed the committee
in private, that raised some Questions. And we immediately en-
gaged with the Jordanians, wno quite frankly gave us an early
warning that there might be a problem which involved the falsifica-
tion of U.N. documents. And to their credit, they alerted us to it.
We immediately engaged in New York, and we are taking meas-
ures in the U.N. context to assure that such fraudulent documents
no longer can be processed to allow Iraq to get goods that are em-
bargoed. So we are cooperating very closely with the Jordanian
Government. And I think I can say very clearly, without any ambi-
g^ty today, that Jordan is in full compliance.
RUSSIAN AID IMPACT ON MIDDLE EAST
Mr. Lantos. I would like to ask a question concerning any im-
pact that the administration's proposed aid package to Russia
might have on aid recipients in the Middle East. As you undoubt-
edly know, I am a very strong and very enthusiastic supporter of
President Clinton's aid package for Russia, as this is very, very
limited cost insurance against potentially catastrophic develop-
ments in that huge country.
There have been some indications that, and perhaps I misread
them, that some individuals in the administration would like to
fund a portion of this aid by transfers from Middle East assistant
accounts. And I would like you to clarify that issue for us.
Mr. Djerejian. Well, Congressman, obviously the structural im-
portance of assistance to Russia is one of the highest priorities of
the administration, and I know of your support for that, in order
to support democratization and private market economy structur-
ing in the former Soviet Union and Russia. Therefore, that cer-
tainly has the highest priority of the administration.
In terms of the impact of tnat program on the Middle East, I can
tell you that, whereas we are in a position of various conflicting de-
mands at a time when budget restraints are becoming greater and
greater, we, however, feel very strongly that our assistance pro-
grams in the Middle East serve such important foreign policy objec-
tives and interests of the U.S. Government that they should be
given the priority that they have had in the past.
Our assistance to the Near East region supports important for-
eign policy goals, including seeking a just, lasting, and comprehen-
sive peace between Israel and all of its Arab neighbors, and with
Secondly, helping our traditional friends in the region meet secu-
rity and stability requirements by deterring aggression and pro-
moting respect for market forces, human rights, and the environ-
ment. And I would like to say here, promoting social justice wher-
ever we can in these societies. Because one of the threats we see
is the threat of Islamic extremism, which is really exploiting what
we call the basic issue of social justice, or lack or social justice, in
these societies, which extremists can exploit. And certain countries
outside the region can exploit, like Iran.
And a third major goal is promoting security arrangements
which will assure tne stability of unimpeded commercial access to
the vast oil reserves of the Arabian peninsula and the Persian
So we have important earmarked funds to Israel and to Egypt.
And the importance of those assistance programs are, I believe,
well documented. But we believe these policies are sound, and we
remain committed to supporting them.
Mr. Lantos. I am very pleased with your response, because I
think it is extremely important that we learn to place high impor-
tance on two very aangerous and critical parts of the world. And
not at the expense of one or the other. So as I understand youi^ tes-
timony, the administration's request for Russian aid stands on its
own, and not in terms of any encroachment on other assistance
Mr. Djerejian. I can speak for the Middle East region. And I
think the viability and the importance of our assistance programs
in the Middle East stand on their own merits.
VISA FOR SHEIK ABDUL-RAHMAN
Mr. Lantos. I only have one more question that relates to a dis-
cussion you and I had during your visit with us relating to the ter-
rorist attack on the World Trade Center. We discussed cases where
various Middle East citizens were g^ven visas in error, as you indi-
cated. As you know, Mr. Secretary, since that time I requested a
full investigation by the Inspector General of how the blind cleric,
sheik Rahman, obtained visas, even though he is on the look-out
list, which would preclude his obtaining a visa.
My most recent information is that just within the past few
weeks, he visited Canada, preached in Canada, and again, contrary
to our laws, was allowed to return to the United States. So I seem
to see a pattern of an individual who, according to our own look-
out list should be excluded from entering the United States, gain-
ing repeated entry into this country, and continuing a pattern of
inciting to violence and terrorism, both here and in Egypt, with
The World Trade Center was successfully bombed. Tourists in
Egypt are being assassinated on a regular basis. I know you share
with me the concern that President Mubarak has expressed. This
is a tremendous blow to the Egyptian tourist industry. I would be
very grateful for an update, Mr. Secretary.
Mr. Djerejian. Well, Congressman, I am very well aware of your
interest and your hearings on this subject in detail. They do fall
into the purview of agencies and bureaus that are not my own.
On the Sheik Omar Abdu Rahman, the decision on whether to
hold deportable aliens in custody pending deportation is one made
by the INS. And I must refer you to them for the considerations
and judgments that they are making on this case.
Mr. Lantos. Let me just say that my most recent information
concerning the issuance of the visa in Khartoum, the Sudan, to this
individual was done by a Sudanese national working for our con-
sulate service. Is that correct?
Mr. Djerejian. I am not aware of that detail, Congressman. I
can certainly verify that and get back to you. But, if vou have been
informed of that officially from our consular oflficials, that is one
thing. I am personally not aware of that. Is this information that
you have obtained independently, or has it been briefed to you by
[The following was subsequently submitted for the record:]
The Khaitoum visa was issued by an American oflicer, althou^ some processing
work was done by a Sudanese nationad employee of our consular section working
under the American officer's supervision.
Mr. Lantos. I have been briefed on this by the administration,
that is correct.
Mr. Djerejian. I see.
Mr. Lantos. Well, would it be possible at our next visit, perhaps,
that you will be able to give us a full report on how this individual
repeatedly obtained visas to enter the United States?
Mr. Djerejian. Yes, I think we can give you a basic chronology
of exactly how it happened. And I would be glad to submit that to
[The information was subsequently submitted for the record and
appears in the appendix.]
Mr. Lantos. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you, Mr. Sec-
Mr. Hamilton. Now, Mr. Secretary, you arrived late. Did you
want to make an opening statement? A brief opening statement?
Your statement, of course, will be entered into the record in full,
and you may make whatever comments you like about it.
Mr, Djerejian. You always put me at a distinct disadvantage,