Governor de Vries, Minister President Pengel, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen:
I appreciate the warmth of your welcome, and I regard it as real warmth when you stand in the rain to see me, although the thing we welcome most in my State right now is rain. We are having a terrible drought. Maybe this is a good omen. Maybe this is an indication that what is bad for us here today will be good for me at home tomorrow.
I know of the traditional hospitality and friendship of the Dutch people, and I value very much the close and cordial ties which link our countries.
I have just come from Punta del Este. There the Presidents of the Americas agreed on the establishment of a Latin American Common Market by 1985 and the necessary steps to achieve it.
You in Surinam already know from your relationship with the European Common Market how great the benefits of this kind of operation can be. I know that you--as I-would encourage our Latin American neighbors in this great venture.
You also know the happiness and other benefits which racial cooperation and harmony can produce. You give to the hemisphere and to the entire world, for that matter, very vivid testimony to the advantages which peace, stability, and the democratic process can bring to people. Creole and Javanese, Hindustani and Chinese, bush Negro and Amer-Indian, working together in this world in miniature, provide all of us--and each of us--an inspiring example of progress and racial understanding.
I could not help but observe--and I shall always remember--the smiling faces that greeted me in this line as I came to the platform.
I am very truly sorry that my stop here is so short, but it is one that I shall always treasure and always remember.
For your hospitality and your friendship, I thank each of you very, very much.