Remarks at Ceremony for Presentation of Credentials

The Honorable Jess L. Baily, the United States Ambassador to the Republic of Macedonia

February 12, 2015 (13:00)
Vila Vodno, Skopje

(As drafted)

President Ivanov, it is a pleasure to meet you and to offer you my letter of credence.  Thank you for hosting this ceremony.  I am honored to represent President Obama and the American people as the United States’ Ambassador to the Republic of Macedonia.

Our countries have much in common.  Both Macedonia and the United States boast a diverse population with different ethnicities, religions, and traditions – a diversity that strengthens and enriches our countries.  I look forward to experiencing personally the breadth of Macedonia’s history and culture.  Likewise, I will look for opportunities to share the culture of the United States with the people of Macedonia.

I start my tenure with a great appreciation for the strong friendship between our two countries.  We are partners and allies.  Our soldiers stand shoulder to shoulder in Afghanistan.  Our business leaders work together to create jobs and grow our economies.  Exchange programs have allowed our doctors, professors, and students to learn from and teach one another.  In any field you can name, people from our nations are working together to advance our shared interests and make the world better, safer, and more free.

I look forward to working with you and the government and people of Macedonia to continue this tradition of partnership.  For over 20 years, and through some difficult times, we have worked together and accomplished much in pursuit of shared goals, most particularly to build a Europe, whole, free and at peace and with Macedonia fully integrated into NATO and the EU.

This work rests on our shared commitments to uphold democracy, individual liberties, and the rule of law.  As the relationship between our countries grows and develops, our shared values ensure that we will remain close.

I am pleased to offer you my letter of credence and my personal assurance that I will do my utmost to continue to build on our strong relationship and to make our shared vision for the future a reality.  Thank you.