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Remarks on the Occasion of Opening the U.S. Embassy in Pristina

Tina Kaidanow, Charge d'Affaires
U.S. Embassy Pristina
Kosovo
April 8, 2008

Charge dAffaires Tina Kaidanow, with President Sejdiu, Prime Minister Thaçi, Assembly Speaker Krasniqi and Pristina Mayor Mustafa at the ceremony to unveil the U.S. Embassy Pristina plaque. [U.S. Embassy Pristina photo]Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, Assembly Speaker Krasniqi, Mayor Mustafa, and members of my own staff,

Thank you all for coming today to share a very significant and exciting occasion with us. As a consequence of Kosovo's new status as an independent country, recognized by many of the world's most powerful and prosperous nations, we have now been granted permission by the U.S. Congress to open formally as a full-fledged U.S. Embassy.

While the U.S. Office in Pristina has operated for many years with all the responsibilities and tasks of a busy diplomatic mission, the designation as an Embassy reflects a new phase in our development and underscores our deep and lasting commitment to work for the progress of Kosovo and all its people.

I am very proud of what this mission has accomplished over the years, and I am especially proud of the hard work and dedication of my staff, both American and local. Everyday, we engage in efforts aimed at improving the lives of ordinary people in Kosovo and addressing the needs of Kosovo's many diverse ethnic communities.

Charge dAffaires Tina Kaidanow, U.S. Marines, and others at the ceremony to unveil the U.S. Embassy Pristina plaque. [ U.S. Embassy Pristina photo]We have worked to improve Kosovo's economic performance, to develop its democratic institutions, to celebrate its diverse cultural and ethnic heritage, and to ensure full rights for all ethnic communities. We have developed contacts with a huge range of people from every background and every political orientation, and we value the insights and opinions they provide. We pledge that all these efforts will continue and intensify over the coming years, and that our assistance to Kosovo will be aimed at ensuring a brighter future for all.

I bring congratulations from the highest level of the U.S. Government on this auspicious occasion; including from Secretary of State Rice, who send her personal greetings.

Thank you all again, to the dignitaries of Kosovo for your kind participation and attendance today, and to my own staff for their outstanding work. It is a pleasure and an honor to be here in Kosovo at such an important time, and we express our special gratitude to the people of Kosovo who have given us their trust and cooperation for all these years.



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