On the Occasion of Europe Day

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
May 8, 2014

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I congratulate the people of the European Union as you celebrate Europe Day on May 9.

Sixty-four years ago, Robert Schuman declared that a united Europe was indispensable to the maintenance of world peace. His vision continues to inspire us to join with our European partners in shaping a future worthy of our historic past.

When Europe negotiated the Treaty of Rome, the United States welcomed its contribution to the welfare of the entire free world. In 1992, when the European Community succeeded in creating a single market, U.S. companies invested – in droves. With the birth of the European Union, we worked together in a truly historic partnership to promote democracy, advance world trade, confront global challenges, and build new bridges across the Atlantic. We have supported EU efforts to jumpstart growth in the Eurozone and shore up European energy security. We continue to negotiate and remain laser focused on achieving an ambitious, comprehensive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. T-TIP will deepen our transatlantic economic partnership, increase economic wellbeing on both sides of the Atlantic, and establish a way of doing business that can serve as the global gold standard.

Today, the United States and an expanded European Union are working together to defend and advance the values history has shown make all nations stronger: human rights, rule of law, and prosperity for our people and citizens around the world. Just this week, I met with EU High Representative Catherine Ashton during her visit to Washington. We had a wide ranging discussion on our shared strategy of using the tools of diplomacy to reduce the conflicts that are threatening Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and other parts of the world, including our work together in support of the people of Ukraine’s right to choose their own future. I thanked her for the tremendous cooperation between the EU and the United States.

We look back in pride on the miles we’ve traveled together. Yet we must also look forward to the challenges that lie ahead. We stand by our eastern partners in their sovereign right to choose their political and economic associations, and chart their own futures. And once again, our strength will come from our unity. As President Obama reaffirmed in Brussels, following the 2014 U.S.-EU Summit, “Europe, including the European Union, is the cornerstone of our engagement around the globe. We are more secure and more prosperous – the world is safer and more just – when Europe and America stand as one.”

On this Europe Day, the United States remains steadfast in our commitment to working side by side with our European partners and friends to advance peace and prosperity around the world, and to supporting the EU’s vision for a united, peaceful, stable, and democratic Europe.