Statement on the Situation in Lebanon

January 3, 1984

This morning the National Security Council examined the Lebanon situation in some detail and how best to achieve our goals. This evening Ambassador Rumsfeld is returning to the Middle East to continue U.S. diplomatic initiatives in Lebanon and the Middle East. I have today written to President Assad regarding the release of Lieutenant Goodman. I expressed my appreciation for this action and suggested that this is an opportune moment to put all the issues on the table and work with the United States to bring greater stability to Lebanon and withdrawals of foreign troops.

Our support for Lebanon remains firm. Progress has been made toward achieving their twin goals of national reconciliation and troop withdrawals. We are continuing our support for these efforts. The work ahead is difficult, but with determined international effort and the good will of all the parties, we believe that continued progress will be made.