March 4, 1988

By its action last night, the House of Representatives again failed to approve further assistance for the Nicaraguan freedom fighters. Without renewal of aid soon, the resistance will cease to provide the pressure necessary to ensure that the Sandinista regime honors its promises under the Guatemala accord of August 1987 and the San Jose Declaration of January 1988 to bring about democracy in Nicaragua.

I ask the House of Representatives and the Senate to act swiftly to renew assistance to the freedom fighters. Key elements of such a package should include:

-- sufficient nonlethal assistance to sustain the resistance in the field;

-- a safe and effective means for delivering; and

-- procedures for expedited consideration by the Congress of a future Presidential request for additional aid if efforts to negotiate a cease-fire are unsuccessful.

In the days ahead, I will be consulting with bipartisan supporters in both Chambers to put together an effective package for aid to the resistance. Prompt renewal of assistance to the resistance remains essential to advance the national security interests of the United States.