Ambassador Adrian Zuckerman at the Awarding of Plaque to Former Prime Minister Ludovic Orban

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Today is a truly historic day. As we gather here today on International Human Rights Day to celebrate these historic cooperation agreements in the fight against human trafficking, we are fundamentally honoring the overarching principles of the Rule of Law. The belief that laws based upon our principles and ideals are essential to ensuring an orderly and just society. The belief that no one is above the law, everyone is treated equally under the law, everyone is held accountable to the same laws, that there are clear and fair processes for enforcing laws, and fundamental human rights such as life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are guaranteed for all.

(Former) Prime Minister Orban, could you please join me.

(Former) Prime Minister Orban, we are here to celebrate the achievements that Romania has made in the fight against human trafficking and a full telling of these achievements cannot be made without us also acknowledging all that you did to make this happen. The successes celebrated here today were born from many people who labored long and hard. Minister Orban, through your leadership you started this process and put all of these pieces in motion. As the Prime Minister, you led to fight against the practices of the past that eroded the foundations of the Rule of Law within Romania and allowed human trafficking to continue and spread. You said enough was enough, and you set out to rebuild that foundation and through your efforts new life has been breathed into the Rule of Law in Romania and the fight against human trafficking. (Former) Prime Minister, you have many things to be proud of, and the successful fight against human trafficking is certainly one of them.

So, (former) Prime Minister Orban, today we honor you as well. The plaque reads as follows:

“Ludovic Orban, with the highest appreciation for your continued and tireless efforts to promote democracy and the Rule of Law within Romania. You have forged an unbreakable bond of friendship with the United States. Many thanks. Ambassador Adrian Zuckerman”

On behalf of the United States of America, we say, many thanks. Please accept this plaque as a token of our great esteem and appreciation.