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A Message of Greeting of the President of the Czech Republic on the Occasion of the Day of Independence of the USA

6/28/2018

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, dear friends,

First, let me congratulate all American citizens present here on your Day of Independence! I am very sorry that I cannot be here at this beautiful residence with you today in person, but at least I'llgladly use this opportunity to address you. I ask Ambassador King to convey my congratulations to the American people back in the United States and elsewhere. This is your holiday and you should enjoy it!

As you all know, the Czech Republic has its own Independence Day as well. This year, we will celebrate its 100thanniversary on October 28. During the last one hundred years we have proven many times that our two countries are strong allies, dedicated partners and good friends. Czechoslovakia would have never been established without the help of Americans. America would have never been so great without the contribution of Czechs and Slovaks living in the United States.

Those people came to the New World to enjoy the independence, rights and freedoms we are celebrating here today. But they also helped to make the U.S.A. the strong and great country that it is today.

The history of the Czech Republic and the United States is intermingled. It has not always been easy, but our relationship has proven its power.

Today the Czech Republic and the U.S. remain close to each other. On the bilateral level, the United States is our important political and economic partner (by the way, most Czech exports outside the EU goes to the U.S.A.). We both are members of NATO and other international organizations. However, most importantly we, Czechs and Americans, share the key and principle values that make us a part of the Euro-Atlantic world.

Nobody says that everything is perfect. We all know that the bilateral agenda could welcome a fresh impulse. We Czechs and Europeans also know that we must do more to secure our safety. Other challenges come from a certain shift in the priorities of the American administration. However, despite angry tweets and looming tit-for-tat economic measures, it is clear that Europe needs America and America needs Europe.

I can assure you that the Czech Republic values her friendship with the United States. So do I – despite accusations by some that I am pushing this country eastwards, or that I am a Russian agent, or similar cliché. To all of those nay-sayers I would like to say clearly: the bond between the Czech Republic, Europe and the United States is solid and unbreakable.

Ladies and gentlemen, let me congratulate you again to the Independence Day and wish you enjoy the celebration!

Yours,

Miloš Zeman, the President of the Czech Republic

The message of greeting was read by Rudolf Jindrák, the Head of the Foreign Affairs Department of the Office of the President, at the USA reception in Prague on the 28th June 2018

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