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Remarks by Ambassador Michael Battle at the 2023 Independence Day Event
July 6, 2023

Good afternoon. It is my great pleasure to be with you today. I want to begin by thanking Ambassador Dr. Samwel Shelukindo, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation for joining us today. Your presence reflects the value the Government of Tanzania places on the strong and enduring partnership that the U.S. enjoys with the government and citizens of Tanzania, and we are honored to have you here.

This is a glorious day – we have an amazing jazz band from the U.S. Army and students from the Tanzanian Action Music Academy. We have wonderful food and drink from some great U.S. companies and American-owned local businesses. I add my personal thanks to all our sponsors and supporters who made tonight’s celebration possible. We will have fireworks display later this evening. And since we want you to enjoy yourself, I’m going to keep my remarks brief.

It is important to remember why we are here. 247 years ago, the founders of the United States came together and declared a new nation under a revolutionary idea: the belief that we are all created equal, that we are free to govern ourselves, and that each of us is entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

The story of independence is not something that happens and then we just put it away. It’s something that we all must fight for every single day.

Today, we celebrate the 247th anniversary of our nation’s independence, and we also recognize 62 years of official diplomatic relations between the United States and Tanzania.

We are two countries which want the same things: Access to education and jobs, regional peace and security, respect for rule of law and human rights, and the promise that our children will have a bright future ahead of them.

Together we are committed to enabling youth to seize the opportunities that the future will bring.

Together We are committed to increasing trade and investment between our countries.

Together We are committed to bolstering peace and security in the region.

Together We are committed to the respect for the rule of law, democratic governance, and human rights.

Based on shared values, mutual respect and mutual responsibility we have stood with Tanzania.

In 1963 Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere met with U.S. President John F. Kennedy who started the U.S. Peace Corps and Tanzania was one of the first nations to receive a peace corps delegation. A relationship which remains strong to this day with Peace Corps Volunteers working on education, health, agricultural and related fields.

Many years later U.S. President George W. Bush and Tanzanian President Kikwete became and remain close friends and Tanzania has one of the world’s largest PEPFAR programs which has saved millions of Tanzanian lives and provided health care and medical care for millions more.

Just a few months ago Tanzanian President Samia Hassan and U.S. Vice President Harris had their third meeting to further solidify commitments to work closely together on strengthening trade and investment relations. We are working hard to strengthen a relationship that while remaining cognizant of the continued need for development and aid will transition to a more sustainable model of trade and investment.

I want to conclude my remarks by reading greetings from Vice President Harris as a follow up to her recent visit to Tanzania. (Vice President Kamala Harris Remarks – PDF 36KB)