Thomas Barrett (U.S. Ambassador to Luxembourg): On the Importance of Shared Values
The United States Ambassador to Luxembourg, Thomas Barrett, who recently presented his credentials to HRH Grand Duke Henri, discusses the US’s strong historical, financial and cultural ties with Luxembourg. He stresses the importance of common values on issues such as human rights, combatting climate change and educational and cultural exchanges.
Can you describe your itinerary in Luxembourg in a few words?
The first step ambassadors must take when posted to a new country is the protocol of presenting their credentials. I had the honor of mine being received by HRH Grand Duke Henri in February. Since then, I have met with Prime Minister Bettel and many Luxembourg government officials. My staff have kept me very busy visiting a number of companies, media outlets, and other local organizations. My first public event was the 77th anniversary of the liberation of Luxembourg, celebrated in Vianden. I’ve been to the Luxembourg American Cemetery several times and aim to visit many more memorials and events to keep those memories alive.
“The importance of strong alliances built on common values is being demonstrated today more clearly than ever”
What are your priorities as U.S. Ambassador in Luxembourg?
The importance of strong alliances built on common values is currently being demonstrated more clearly than ever. I see opportunities to bolster the bilateral partnership between Luxembourg and the United States built on the cornerstone of trade and investment. I intend to expand cooperation in the frontier of space and in combatting climate change, a key priority for the Biden Administration. This year the United States and Luxembourg are serving together on the United Nations Human Rights Council where we will work together to hold accountable those who violate these fundamental rights and freedoms. Another priority is our strong cultural connections including education, exchanges, popular culture and commemorative events. I’m excited about the Esch 2022 cultural events this year that will include a host of prominent American musical artists.
How would you describe the bilateral relations between your country and Luxembourg?
My role has been made easier because I can build upon the already strong and positive relationship between our two countries that stems from our shared history in World War II and that has flourished through cooperation in the areas of investment, trade and defense, as well as our shared cultural ties. Our countries will always stand firm to defend the values of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. As a founding member of the organization that led to today’s European Union, as well as NATO, the UN, and the OECD, Luxembourg is part of the backbone of the international system that is and will remain key to U.S. foreign policy politically, economically, and culturally.