Remarks by Robert Copley
Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. of the U.S. Embassy
August 15, 2017
Ladies and gentlemen,
Friends and partners of this diplomatic mission, welcome and many thanks for being here tonight and for this warm welcome. It is an honor to be in the Dominican Republic and spend time with you this evening.
Although tonight is my official presentation as Chargé d’Affaires, I have been in country for about four weeks now, enough time to get to know some of this country’s wonderful qualities and its friendly people.
Obviously, with such a short time here, I have yet to visit many places in this beautiful country. However, my wife Yanira and I have had the opportunity to visit the Cibao region, specifically the cities of Salcedo and Santiago, where we visited the Casa Hermanas Mirabal Museum and the Monumento a los Heroes de la Restauración; which will be commemorated tomorrow, August 16th.
During these visits I had the chance to observe the historical and ongoing commitment of Dominicans to democracy, independence, and human rights – causes I feel strongly committed to.
Realizing first-hand the depth of these shared values has been a great satisfaction, because I believe there is no more solid basis on which to continue to build on the relationship between our people. As Charge d’Affaires, my goal is to give continuity to what was built prior to my appointment, something that would be difficult to accomplish if not for the shared affinity for those values I have seen over these last few days.
In addition to values, our countries share needs and objectives of great relevance. We have issues of common concern, such as security, prosperity, energy, education and health, issues which have been formally acknowledged in Washington as pillars of the U.S. Strategy for Engagement in the Caribbean, recently passed in Congress.
A few weeks ago, we had a delegation of U.S. congressmen visit, in which Dominican-American legislator Adriano Espaillat participated. The fact that legislator Espaillat and the other congressmen who visited were also involved in approving the new strategy is another example of the strength of our relations and the United States’ commitment and interest in the Dominican Republic. The fact that there is a legislator of the United States that is also Dominican is further proof that we are more than partners and neighbors.
Now I would like to address the diplomatic corps. First, I want to thank you for taking the time to accompany Yanira and me in this, our first reception.
I want to tell you that as Chargé d’Affaires, I will be focused on working with you for the good of the Dominican Republic and the United States. I also want to assure you that in me you have a partner interessted in maintaining good communications and someone always willing to listen and learn. Finally, I would like to emphasize that absolutely all of us gathered here have something special in common – whether you are a Dominican government official, a citizen, or a member of the diplomatic corps – we all have the same desire to look after the good of this country. Everyone here wants to see a prosperous and peaceful Dominican Republic.
On behalf of the United States Embassy in Santo Domingo, thanks again for being here tonight, I look forward to continue working with you on our shared goals.