In an official ceremony held on Tuesday March 18, 2014, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) President Manny Mori received the Letter of Credence for his Excellency Alfonso Garzon Mendez, accrediting him as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Colombia to the FSM with residency in Indonesia. Ambassador Mendez is the first Ambassador of the Republic of Colombia to be accredited to the Federated States of Micronesia since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in September of 1992.
During the ceremony, President Mori welcomed the Ambassador and congratulated him for this historical accomplishment as the first Colombian Ambassador to be accredited to the FSM. He also expressed his desire to see enhanced cooperation between the two countries especially on issues of mutual interest.
The President and the Ambassador shared views on possible areas of cooperation with emphasis on climate change, transnational crime, food security and human trafficking.
President Mori reflected on Colombia's vast experience in combating transnational crimes, which among others, includes illegal drug and human trafficking, and expressed that this is an area for possible cooperation between the two countries. He affirmed climate change as an issue that continues to be a top priority for the FSM and spoke of his hope for Colombia's support in international climate change forums, considering mutually-shared concerns on the effects of global warming. The President talked of the direct link between climate change and food security especially for small islands dispersed throughout the FSM.
Ambassador Mendez thanked President Mori for accepting his Letter of Credence and said he was honored for being the first Ambassador from Colombia accredited in the FSM. He expressed Colombia's shared interest in the issues discussed and affirmed that Colombia is ready to work with the FSM at the bilateral and multilateral levels in addressing these common issues. With the new formalized friendship, Colombia and the FSM have the opportunity to strengthen relations.
In attendance at the Presentation of Credential ceremony was Mr. Samson E. Pretrick, Acting Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs, staff from the department, as well as staff from the Public Information Office of the Office of the President.
Ambassador Mendez was accompanied by his spouse, Madam Alicia Maldonado de Garzon.
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