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Press Release

Remarks by Douglas H. Paal Director, American Institute in Taiwan American Independence Day Reception July 3, 2003Taipei, Taiwan

Thank you for joining us today as the United States celebrates its 227th year of independence. All of us at the American Institute in Taiwan want to express our deep gratitude for the friendship, warmth and hospitality we receive here as guests of Taiwan. Our mutual democratic values and desire to achieve peace and prosperity make cooperation between us as natural as the waters flowing from Taiwan's beautiful mountains. This cooperation is as enduring as it is natural.

Taiwan continues to undergo great change, and we at AIT are attempting to keep pace. My country is also experiencing new challenges, such as from international terrorism, and this is causing people from Taiwan inconvenience in obtaining visas and in traveling to the U.S. On behalf of AIT, I want to thank you for your patience and understanding as we adjust to our new challenges.

Speaking personally, today is my first anniversary as the American representative in Taiwan. I want to thank all of you for your kind welcome, your patience, and your willingness to listen.

Now, please join me in a toast to the lasting and quite solid friendship between the peoples of the United States and Taiwan, to the peace and prosperity of our two lands, and to the health of President Chen!

Thank you.