The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
February 9, 2005

Statement on Solidarity Initiative to Support our Partners in Freedom

The President intends to ask Congress to support $400 million in additional funding to strengthen the capabilities of our partners to advance democracy and stability around the world. These funds, which the Administration will seek in the supplemental budget request, reflect the principle that an investment in a partner in freedom today will help ensure that America will stand united with stronger partners in the future. This assistance will support nations that have deployed troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as other partners promoting freedom around the world.

As President Bush has said, "the best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world." Our closest partners agree. For many of these partners, now vibrant democracies and staunch allies, the tragedy of tyranny is a painful chapter in their own recent histories. They understand the value of freedom, and are delivering on their strong commitment to fostering democracy at home by helping to advance freedom and stability abroad.

Today, the President met with one of our strongest partners in freedom, President Aleksander Kwasniewski of Poland. The Solidarity Initiative will assist nations such as Poland, which have taken political and economic risks in order to act on their convictions, to develop and sustain the capabilities needed to do so.

Congress has consistently supported our partners in freedom in the past. We urge continued Congressional support for these partners in the future.

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