CDA’s Remarks – Independence Day Event

We hold these truths to be self-evident,

that all men are created equal,

that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights,

that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Chief Judge Adel Abdul-Rasaq,

Representatives of Governor Nasrouwi, and Provincial Council Chairman Bazouni,

Distinguished members of the Government of Iraq,

Representatives of consulates and

International Organizations,

Friends and colleagues.

On behalf of

the staff of the

Consulate and U.S. Mission to Iraq,

I welcome you to our

celebration of the

birth of American democracy.

The words I started with are

taken from our

Declaration of Independence and

were first heard

241 years ago.

To this day

these words stir the hearts of

Americans and

form the basis for

our government.

These core principles also

drive our partnership with

the people of Iraq.

The foundation for

our relations remains the

Strategic Framework Agreement

between Iraq and

the United States.

This agreement

reaffirms the relationship of

cooperation and

friendship between

our two countries and peoples.

On behalf of the U.S. Mission in Iraq,

I offer congratulations to the

government and people of Iraq

on the liberation of Mosul.

This is a critical milestone

in the global fight against ISIS,

and underscores the success

of the international effort

led by the Iraqi Security Forces.

We honor the sacrifices of

all involved in this noble campaign and

achieving this victory.

Many of you in Southern Iraq

have lost fathers and sons,

brothers and husbands as martyrs

in the shared fight against terrorism.

We express condolences

for the many lives lost in the operation.

There is still much work to be done

to defeat this enemy.

The Global Coalition will continue to stand

with our Iraqi partners to ensure that ISIS is defeated wherever it remains in Iraq.

But we know that

after ISIS is defeated,

much work will remain.

As the largestbilateral donor to

humanitarian and

stabilization efforts,

we will work with Iraq and

the international community to

help rebuild a prosperous society.

In southern Iraq,
that means building people-to-people relationships, that is:

through scholarships, exchange and capacity-building programs, the Commercial Law Development Program

and associated efforts to improve the business environment, USAID assistance on good governance challenges, and our support for the varied dimensions of the Basrah-Houston Sister City agreement, among other activities.

Iraq is an

ancient civilization and a

young democracy.

And,

like the United States and

all democracies in the world,

Iraq faces challenges.

As we gather to

celebrate the

birth of American democracy,

we also pledge our

continued support to a

unified,

sovereign,

democratic, and

prosperous Iraq that

meets the aspirations of

all of its people.

Thank you, and

Happy Independence Day!