REPORTER. Could we just get a few words about your feelings about the evacuation operation in Lebanon so far?
THE PRESIDENT. The evacuation was a complete success. I wish to congratulate the Department of Defense, the Department of State, and all other agencies that were involved. It was well-planned; it was well-executed. I am grateful for the cooperation of the other states and other organizations that cooperated to restrain any violence or to keep the area secure while the evacuation went on.
The United States will continue its role of a peacemaker in Lebanon. We will continue our role as a party to try and achieve the long-sought peace and security in the Middle East.
Q. One other question. The role of the PLO [Palestine Liberation Organization] is a little unclear to us. Can you clarify that at all?
THE PRESIDENT. The PLO and all other parties in the Lebanon area have cooperated completely in making it possible for us to evacuate the Americans and the other nationals without any incident whatsoever.