Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
July 19, 2013


On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I offer the people of Belgium my warmest wishes as you commemorate your National Day on July 21.

This National Day coincides with the historic transition from the reign of King Albert II to that of his son, his Royal Highness Prince Philippe. Throughout his nearly 20 years on the throne, King Albert II has admirably served the Belgian people, and I congratulate him on a successful reign.

The partnership between the United States and Belgium is founded on a common set of ideals, forged in the crucible of war.

Today, we recognize the potential on many fronts for still greater cooperation, from counterterrorism to the expansion of trade to bringing peace and stability to Libya, Mali, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Belgium has been a vital contributor to the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.

As a founding member and host to NATO and the European Union, Belgium has worked side by side with the United States as a friend and ally. On multiple continents, we stand united in our shared commitment to promoting democracy, peace, and prosperity in the world.

I wish all Belgians a safe and joyous National Day. The United States looks forward to continuing our strong friendship with the Belgian people as Prince Philippe takes the throne.



PRN: 2013/0907

[This is a mobile copy of On the Occasion of Belgium's National Day]