On behalf of the people of the United States, I congratulate the people of Paraguay as you celebrate the 209th anniversary of your independence.
Our bilateral relationship with your country is stronger than ever. In December 2019, President Abdo Benitez visited President Trump at the White House, where the two leaders pledged to deepen our partnership with the shared goals of increasing trade, strengthening democracy and transparency, and building security cooperation. In September 2019, Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan and Senior Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump visited Paraguay to highlight our joint efforts to increase economic prosperity, especially support for women entrepreneurs. We commend Paraguay for your strong actions to combat the spread of COVID-19 and your continued commitment to combat corruption, fight transnational crime, and strengthen security in the Western hemisphere.
As we join the Paraguayan people in celebrating democracy and independence, we remember the historical ties between the people of Paraguay and the United States, including the important role President Rutherford B. Hayes played in helping Paraguay remain independent. We look forward to our continued partnership and friendship in the years to come.