People-to-people relationships define US-Malaysia ties, says US Ambassador

22 Jan 2021 / 20:05 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: Ambassador of the United States (US) to Malaysia, Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir, said it is largely people-to-people relationships that define the US-Malaysia ties.

The ambassador, who will wrap up her tour of duty here soon after serving more than four years, said much has been shared between Malaysia and the US, including the need to build unity through the blessings and strengths of both countries’ diverse people.

“But most of all, it is the people-to-people relationships that define the US-Malaysia relationship.

“I am inspired by amazing Malaysian young women and men who I have had the blessing to meet...they are committed to building the communities and Malaysia for a future that is prosperous, more peaceful and united,“ she said in her farewell message posted on the official Facebook account of US Embassy in Malaysia.

Lakhdhir said she is extremely proud that the US has and will continue to support Malaysia in its efforts to combat wildlife trafficking and protect the country’s unique ecosystems.

“This is critical for Malaysia, but also for the world to protect our environment,“ she said, adding that one of her first trips was to visit the activities of the Sabah Wildlife Department.

The diplomat said US-based companies here have been contributing to Malaysia’s economy and society for over a hundred years and that they employ hundreds of thousands of Malaysians and are critical to the prosperity of Malaysia’s SMEs.

“In 2020, US businesses have donated nearly RM7 million to frontliners and local communities in need because of the pandemic. I know in 2021, they will continue their great efforts,“ she added.

Commenting on her four-year stint in Malaysia, Lakhdhir said Malaysia has graciously hosted numerous visits by US naval ships, and sharing, among others, public health and education programmes, besides exchanging ideas, information, music and building strong relationships.

She said the US is committed to ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific and “we are proud to work with Malaysia on regional and maritime security”.

“Thank You Malaysia for being a wonderful host to me for the last four years, we have worked together to create opportunities for Malaysians and Americans alike and I know after I depart, our relationship will continue to be strong,“ she added. -Bernama

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