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Media Availability with Secretary Rumsfeld in Algeria

Presenter: Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld
February 12, 2006

Media Availability with Secretary Rumsfeld in Algeria

     SECRETARY RUMSFELD:  Mr. President, this has been a thoroughly interesting and helpful visit.  I had the privilege of visiting Algeria some 30 years ago and it has been a privilege to come back and have meetings with the Prime Minister, the Minister of Defense, and now this very interesting discussion with you. 

     The United States values greatly our close relationship in the counterterrorism efforts.  We had the pleasure of meeting with your representatives in Sicily recently in terms of the Mediterranean Dialogue countries and their relationships with NATO.

     We look forward to strengthening our military to military relationship and our cooperation on counterterrorism.  I thank you so much for your hospitality today on this lovely, sunny day.

     Mr. President, I'm told that the protocol here is for me to take a question or two, so I would be happy to take a question or two and then I'm told that we're en-route to the airport on a tight schedule.

     QUESTION:   Mr. Secretary, what if anything is the connection between the extent of US military cooperation with Algeria and Algeria's progress on political reforms?

     SECRETARY RUMSFELD:  The United States and Algeria have a multi-faceted relationship.  It involves political and economic as well as military to military cooperation. We very much value the cooperation we're receiving in counterterrorism because it's important to both of our countries.

     Are there questions from the Algerian side?

     [No response].

     Very good.  Thank you so much.

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