Nepal National Day Celebration

Manpreet Singh Anand
Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs
University of the District of Columbia
Washington, DC
September 28, 2016

I am pleased to be here to congratulate you and the people of Nepal as you commemorate Constitution Day. The promulgation of the constitution is an important milestone in Nepal’s democratic journey.

Your commitment to democracy continues to be evident in the peaceful government transition over the past few weeks. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the people and government of Nepal to build a more democratic, prosperous, and stable nation that can carry out the important tasks of constitutional implementation, reconstruction, and economic development.

We welcome Prime Minister Dahal’s openness to renewing efforts to accommodate the aspirations of all Nepalis. We urge protection of globally-accepted human rights norms and principles, including gender equality, religious freedom, and the right to citizenship.

Democracies form natural bonds and we look forward to strengthening that bond in the years ahead. Like the United States, Nepal is gifted with a wonderfully diverse, tolerant, creative, and entrepreneurial population – one that can only realize its full potential when everyone is treated equally before the law.

It has been more than a year since a devastating earthquake struck your country, and the American people continue to feel the grief of families who lost loved ones. We stand with you and all Nepalis who refuse to let tragedy overcome the desire for a better future. The United States will always admire the strength of Nepalis who have rebuilt their homes and their lives, and we will continue to do everything we can to support you in this effort.

Every year, the State Department brings at least 80 Nepali citizens to the U.S. for professional and youth exchange programs ranging from a few weeks to a few years to build the capacity of Nepal’s future leaders, as well as share experiences and develop networks with their American counterparts. These ties between our people underpin our friendship and the bilateral relationship.

Our commitment to Nepal’s development needs remains steadfast. We are fully committed to Nepal for the long-term, and we look forward to coordinating closely with the Government of Nepal and other nations to ensure Nepal’s development goals are met.