4 June Press Brief

Monday, 4th June 2007
Welcome again to another session of our weekly Press briefing.

The President returned Sunday from Libya, where she participated in the 9th Ordinary Session of the Conference of Heads of State and government of the Community of Sahel-Sharan States (CEN-SAD).

At the conference, the President used the opportunity to get firm commitment from the Libyans at the highest level on Liberian-Libyan Partnership. The President is pleased at the growing level of the partnership between the two countries, which include the renovation of the Ducor Palace Hotel, the establishment of a rubber processing plant as well as a study for the construction by the Libyans of a low, medium and high cost housing development in Liberia..

The President has, meanwhile, appealed to the Libyans to provide support for the renovation of the Executive mansion.

While in Libya, the President also met with the Prime Minister of Morocco, Mr. Dris Jettou, who was also in Libya, attending the CEN-SAD Conference. During discussions between the President and the Moroccan Prime Minister, it was agreed that the Joint Commission for Liberia and Morocco be reactivated to boost bilateral relations between the two countries. The Moroccan Prime Minster informed President Johnson Sirleaf that his government will increase the number of scholarships for Liberian students to study in Morocco.

During discussions with the Moroccan Prime Minister, the President was also interested in seeking more Moroccan assistance in the area of higher education, particularly in Medicine and engineering.
Mr. Jettou expressed his governmentís delight and appreciation over progress being made in Liberia and reaffirmed his governmentís support in helping to move Liberia forward.

Finally, we are encouraged by the spirited performance on Sunday by our National Football Team, the Lone Star. We are pleased that though the result of the match did not favor our team, citizens exibited a high degree of patriotism and maturity in accepting the result. We see the performance of the young team, as work in progress.

The President, however, expresses deepest regrets over the death of more than twenty soccer fans, mostly Togolese, including that countryís Sports Minister, in a helicopter crash in Freetown. It is the Presidentís hope that the bereaved families will gain solace as they mourn the loss of their relatives, friends and loved ones.