CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL
Rice Speaks With Reporters
Aired March 14, 2003 - 12:36 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Condoleezza Rice, the president's national security adviser, is speaking to reporters just outside the Al-Jazeera Arabic language satellite television studio in Washington, D.C.
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CONDOLEEZZA RICE, NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: ... this is an opportunity to assess where we are. It is an opportunity to think about the ways in which the United Nations security process can come to a conclusion, because it is time to bring it to a conclusion. They will look at all of the possibilities. And I will tell you, everybody has been on the phones and will be on the phones this weekend.
But it is time to come to a conclusion that says to Saddam Hussein, it is time for you to disarm or be disarmed. It is time for you to finally comply with Resolution 1441, which was one final chance to disarm. Resolution 1441 wasn't one final chance to be inspected or one final chance to make a little bit of progress. It was one final chance to disarm. And they will chart a way forward, but the moment of truth is coming here, and it's time for the co-sponsors to get together and discuss it.
QUESTION: Have you seen any sort of agreement with the undecided countries, with Mexico, in order to gain their support?
RICE: We are still talking, of course, to the undecided countries. But the key here is that we've been active for a very long time as an international community, 12 years. This is not a matter of the last four months, this is a matter of the last 12 years. And sooner or later the United Nations Security Council has got to act or not act. And so, it is time for the Security Council to resolve this. And the president and prime ministers will get together this weekend and they'll talk about the way forward.
QUESTION: Is the United States prepared to (UNINTELLIGIBLE) on its arms sales to Taiwan in exchange for China's cooperation at the U.N.?
RICE: Our policy on Taiwan is very, very clear. We have a one China policy. We believe that there should be no unilateral change of the status quo. But the president of course operates under the Taiwan Relations Act, which commits the United States to helping Taiwan defend itself, and nothing changes in that.
QUESTION: What are they waiting for? What are they holding out for? RICE: I'm sorry?
QUESTION: The undecided six on the Security Council, what do they want?
RICE: We are just talking with people about it. It's a difficult decision, we understand that. But there is a certain responsibility that comes with Security Council membership, whether permanent or elected. And we are continuing to talk to people about that responsibility.
Last question. Yes?
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) on the clarification of the road map. Is there something more than just a (UNINTELLIGIBLE) to Britain after the failure of the resolution?
RICE: This decision about coming out with the road map is tied very closely to what the president considers to be positive developments in the Palestinian Reform Movement, because that is that -- the Palestinian Authority the other day has created a prime ministership. We expect that it will be a prime ministership that has real authority. That is a step forward. There is a new Israeli government as well. It's time to give that new Israeli government and a Palestinian prime minister, when he is confirmed, the opportunity to try and move forward.
Thank you very much. Thank you.
QUESTION: Have Mexico asked for anything in exchange for the vote?
RICE: I'm sorry, we are talking to everybody about their concerns, but this is about peace. That's all.
BLITZER: The president's national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice here in Washington emerging from the studios of Al-Jazeera, the Arabic language satellite television channel.
She obviously just spoke on Al-Jazeera, talking about U.S. policy not only towards Iraq, but the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, the president speaking out on that earlier today. Also speaking about this summit in the Azores on Sunday. President Bush going to meet with the leaders of Britain and Spain. The Portuguese island of the Azores in the Atlantic Ocean. A huge summit. Very important summit this coming Sunday.
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