PROCLAMATION: Captive Nations Week, 2000
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary
                          (Camp David, Maryland)

Immediate Release                              July 14, 2000

                        CAPTIVE NATIONS WEEK, 2000

                               - - - - - - -


                              A PROCLAMATION

     When President Eisenhower signed the first Captive Nations Week
Proclamation in 1959, the fate of freedom around the world was still far
from certain.  While the United States and our Allies had defeated Adolf
Hitler and the Axis Powers in World War II, a parti-tioned Berlin stood as
a bleak symbol of a divided Europe, and millions throughout Asia, Africa,
and South America continued to suffer under communist and authoritarian

     Today, as we embark on a new century, democracy is on the rise across
the globe.  More than half the world?s people live under governments of
their own choosing.  The Iron Curtain has been lifted, allowing the light
of liberty into the nations of Central and Eastern Europe.  Democratic rule
has swept through the countries of Latin America, replacing abusive
military regimes with elected civilian governments.  And in Africa and
Asia, many nations have finally gained independence.

     This rising tide of freedom is no accident of history; it was achieved
through the courage, determination, and sacrifice of millions of men and
women here in America and in captive nations around the world.  Whether
speaking out in the halls of the United Nations for those silenced by
oppressive regimes, standing guard through frigid nights on the DMZ in
Korea, or sharing the fruits of liberty through the Peace Corps,
genera-tions of Americans have made sure that our country is an ally and
source of hope for all people yearning for freedom and dignity.  Around the
globe, freedom-loving people have risked and often sacrificed their lives
to end oppression, whether uniting against tyranny through the Solidarity
movement in Poland or defying intimidation and violence to vote in free
elections in El Salvador and Nicaragua.

     The tide keeps turning toward democracy, human rights, and free market
economies.  Yet there remain tyrants who use brutality, ethnic cleansing,
guns, and prisons to silence voices of reason and tolerance within their
countries.  As a Nation born of the ideals of freedom, justice, and human
dignity, America has a solemn obligation to continue speaking out on behalf
of these still-captive nations and their people and lend them our support.
We draw strength for this task from the knowledge that our cause is right
and inspiration from the people of former captive nations who are
flourishing today.

     The Congress, by Joint Resolution approved July 17, 1959 (73 Stat.
212), has authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation
designating the third week in July of each year as "Captive Nations Week."

     NOW, THEREFORE, I, WILLIAM J. CLINTON, President of the United States
of America, do hereby proclaim July 16 through July 22, 2000, as Captive
Nations Week.  I call upon the people of the United States to observe this
week with appropriate ceremonies and activities and to rededicate ourselves
to the principles of freedom, human rights, and self-determination for all
the peoples of the world.

     IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this
fourteenth day of July, in the year of our Lord two thousand, and of the
Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and

                                   WILLIAM J. CLINTON

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