U.S.-PHL ties founded on friendship, says U.S. embassy official

March 4, 2012 12:57 pm 

ILOILO CITY, March 3 – The three-day “America in 3D” road show of the United States Embassy, which formally opened Friday at SM City-Iloilo, is part of the effort to prove the close ties that bind the U.S. and the Philippines, according to U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission Leslie Bassett.

In her message, Bassett said the closeness of relationship between the Americans and Filipinos is founded on the friendship with one another.

The statement of the U.S. embassy official was affirmed by Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. and Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog in their respective remarks during the opening program that was graced by other local officials and government executives, other embassy staff, officers from the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet, and representatives of partners from the business sector, including SM Malls and Coca-Cola.

The "America in 3D" road show, wherein 3D stands for Diplomacy, Development and Defense, is aimed at showcasing the vast diversity of American culture through their music, classic cars and motorbikes, and food. Also lined up are sessions on how to apply for U.S. visas and to do business and study in the U.S. as well as basketball and soccer clinics, and dance workshops.

The “Orient Express” band of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet will perform and belt out various genres of American music during the SM City activities that will also feature well-known Filipino musical artists.

The band’s high-energy initial performance at the opening program delighted the audience at the mall’s activity center that also included members of the local American community.

The embassy also awarded the winners of the essay writing contest it launched here about U.S.-Philippine friendship in time for the Iloilo roadshow which will be here until March 4.

Ms. Bassett will also lead embassy officials and join Iloilo government officials and private sector organizations in a series of community outreach activities, including mangrove tree planting and school painting.

The road show was initiated by U.S. Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. in 2011 as a way of celebrating Filipino-American friendship.

This is the fourth road show held in the country since then. (PNA) scs/ajp/JSC/vlo

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