On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I extend warm wishes to the government and people of Pakistan on the 74th anniversary of the signing of the Lahore Resolution, which laid the foundation for Pakistan's independence.
Building stronger ties with the people of Pakistan has long been a deep personal commitment of mine. I was privileged to sponsor what became known as the Kerry-Lugar-Berman bill in Congress, which provided significant economic assistance to the people of Pakistan beginning several years ago. And we continue to deepen our partnership with Pakistan today, as both of our nations work to build peace and prosperity in Pakistan and the region.
President Obama and I were pleased to welcome Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to Washington last year, a visit that highlighted the strength of our relationship and our commitment to partnership. That's why we reinvigorated our Strategic Dialogue based on shared priorities. And that's why we will continue to work with Pakistan on areas of mutual interest, from combating the forces of extremism, to bolstering our economies and those of the region, to helping Pakistan address its energy challenges, to increasing access to education.
I have visited Pakistan many times, both as a Senator and as Secretary of State. I have experienced firsthand the extraordinary hospitality and friendship that the people of Pakistan have to offer. Our relationship is strong because our people-to-people ties with Pakistan are growing even stronger through the thousands of professional and academic exchanges that take place between our countries each year.
On this special day, we remember the message of "hope, courage, and confidence" the Quaid-e-Azam delivered to the Pakistani people in his Eid-ul-Azha Message in 1947. Together, we must face our challenges with the same hope and determination.
We all have a stake in Pakistan's success, just as Pakistan has a stake in ours.