News




DATE=5/25/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-232750
TITLE=COHEN / GULF  (S-O)
BYLINE=MICHAEL BOWMAN
DATELINE=SANTIAGO
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 

INTRO:  U-S DEFENSE SECRETARY WILLIAM COHEN HAS CONFIRMED THE 
UNITED STATES INTENDS TO SCALE BACK ITS FORCES IN THE PERSIAN 
GULF TO THE APPROXIMATE LEVELS THAT EXISTED BEFORE LAST 
NOVEMBER'S STAND-OFF WITH IRAQ OVER U-N WEAPONS INSPECTIONS.  
V-O-A'S MICHAEL BOWMAN REPORTS FROM SANTIAGO, CHILE, WHERE MR. 
COHEN IS ON AN OFFICIAL VISIT.

TEXT:  SECRETARY COHEN SAYS THE UNITED STATES WILL REMAIN 
VIGILANT OF IRAQ AND RETAIN A POTENT FORCE IN THE PERSIAN GULF.  
HE SAYS IRAQI PRESIDENT SADDAM HUSSEIN SHOULD TAKE  NO  COMFORT 
FROM THE PARING DOWN OF THE U-S MILITARY PRESENCE IN THE REGION.

                         // COHEN ACT //

         HE REMAINS A THREAT TO THE REGION.  WE WILL CONTINUE A 
         PRESENCE OF ROUGHLY 17 TO 20-THOUSAND (TROOPS).  AGAIN, 
         THAT FORCE WILL HAVE A GOOD DEAL OF PRE-POSITION 
         EQUIPMENT.  IT WILL HAVE SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASED 
         FIREPOWER.

                          // END ACT //

SECRETARY COHEN SAYS THE UNITED STATES WILL RETAIN A SINGLE 
AIRCRAFT CARRIER GROUP IN THE GULF, AND BOOST THE U-S CAPABILITY 
TO STRIKE IRAQ WITH CRUISE MISSILES.  HE SAYS U-S ALLIES SUPPORT 
THE FORCE REDUCTION, WHICH WILL BEGIN IN A FEW DAYS AND BE 
COMPLETED IN SEVERAL WEEKS.  (SIGNED)

NEB/MCB/MMK

25-May-98 8:43 AM EDT (1243 UTC)
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Source: Voice of America
.