Clinton embassy budget less than recommended

February 05, 1999|By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

WASHINGTON -- The Clinton administration budget to upgrade embassy security around the world is far less than the recommendation that an independent review panel made last month.

But State Department officials said a new White House working group was reviewing whether to increase the budget request to build more embassies and comply more closely with the findings of the review board. The panel was established after the bombings of two U.S. embassies in East Africa in August.

The State Department has asked Congress for $300 million to improve security and construct embassies in the new budget year. The department has asked for another $300 million the next year, the last budget that the Clinton administration will submit.

Those figures fall well short of the $1.4 billion a year in new security spending recommended last month by the independent accountability review board.

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee yesterday that budget constraints had limited her department's ability to match the panel recommendations.

State Department officials later said that the budget request to Congress had been drawn up before the independent panel's recommendations.

Pub Date: 2/05/99

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