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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
July 10, 2006

President Bush Welcomes Slovenian Prime Minister Janša to the White House
The Oval Office

President's Remarks

      In Focus: Global Diplomacy

10:51 A.M. EDT

PRESIDENT BUSH: Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for coming. It's been a really fascinating discussion we've had. First, I want to thank you for your friendship. I thank you for your leadership. I really appreciate the fact that you have made the courageous decision to help two young democracies, Afghanistan and Iraq, succeed. Your contributions in Afghanistan and Iraq will make a difference in achieving peace. And so thank you for that very much.

I really appreciate your briefing on your neighborhood. The Prime Minister is a man who has got a clear vision, he understands how to explain problems in a way that will help yield results. And so the fact that you talked about the Balkans in such clear fashion will help us work with you to achieve certain objectives. I want to thank you for that.

I fondly remember my visit to your beautiful country. It was a spectacular visit. I came back to the States and I told people that if you really want to see an interesting slice of heaven, go to Slovenia. It's got a country that's got a lot to it. But the most important thing, it's got wonderful people. And I look forward to working with you, Mr. Prime Minister. I'm confident that by working together we can improve the lives of our respective peoples, as well as improve the lives of those who are struggling against forms of government that won't allow them to have free expression, won't allow them to self govern.

And so welcome to the White House, and thank you for your wonderful meeting.

PRIME MINISTER JANŠA: (As translated.) Mr. President, thank you very much for inviting me and my delegation to the White House. We still remember your visit in Slovenia, and we hope to continue with good cooperation in the future.

I found very useful your information regarding the development of events in the region of Western Balkans. I'm glad we share the same views regarding the prospectus of -- in Western Balkans regarding the security and also the NATO. In spite of the fact that Slovenia is a small country, it completed its allotment of troops in the NATO operations.

Based on the fact that we got a lot of help in our entering the NATO, and European Union, we got a lot of help. We feel that now it's our obligation that we help others to do the same. As I mentioned before, Slovenia will be presiding the European Union in 2008, during which time there will be a summit between the European Union countries and the United States. We would be very happy if we would come welcome you then to Slovenia.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Thanks for coming. Appreciate it, very much. Thank you.

END 10:54 A.M. EDT

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