On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I congratulate the people of the Czech Republic as you celebrate the anniversary of your independence on October 28. Today we honor the passion for freedom and democracy that inspired Tomas Masaryk to establish a new state in 1918, and that lives on in the vibrant democracy of the modern Czech Republic.
The United States and the Czech Republic work closely together on issues from promoting human rights and advancing our collective security to encouraging scientific research and development. Our long friendship is cemented by the millions of Americans of Czech descent with strong family and cultural ties to the region.
We are also joined by our mutual commitment to defend individual freedom, democracy, and human rights as allies in NATO. Czech soldiers serve bravely in the NATO missions to Kosovo and Afghanistan, and they have earned the respect and admiration of partner countries. We honor their commitment and sacrifice as they help the Afghan people secure their future.
I wish all Czechs a safe and happy independence day. I look forward to working together as we continue to expand the cooperation between our countries and strive to build a future defined by peace, prosperity, and freedom.