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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
April 8, 2002

President's Welcomes Today's Announcement in Northern Ireland
Statement by the Press Secretary

The President welcomes today's announcement that the IRA has completed another act of decommissioning. This decision, as described by the International Independent Commission on Decommissioning, to put a "varied and substantial quantity of ammunition, arms, and explosive material beyond use" is the second act of decommissioning inside six months. It reinforces that decommissioning is an on-going process, not a single event.

The President commends General de Chastelain and his colleague Andy Sens at the International Independent Commission on Decommissioning for their efforts to launch and sustain this process.

Decommissioning by all paramilitary groups is critical to the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement. We call on all paramilitary organizations to decommission their weapons and to abstain from obtaining additional weaponry. We also renew our call for movement on other issues central to the Northern Ireland Peace Process, including the participation of all parties on the new policing board and further demilitarization.

We are heartened by today's events and look forward to a future in Northern Ireland where political disputes are resolved exclusively through peaceful means.

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