NEW MARSHALLS COMPACT READY FOR SIGNING

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MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, April 11) - A new United
States funding package for the Marshall Islands worth about $US3 billion could
be signed by the end of this month.

The newly amended Compact of Free Association follows four years
of talks, and includes U.S. funding of over $800 million to the Marshall Islands
for the next 20 years.

The U.S. will continue to use the Kwajalein missile-testing
range for another 60 years in exchange for payments totaling $2.3 billion.

The new compact will be reviewed by Marshall Islands political
leaders and will then be resubmitted to the U.S. Congress by the State
Department.

April 11, 2003

Radio Australia: http://abc.net.au/ra

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