In a US State Department press release, US Secretary of State John Kerry today sent Argentina his best wishes as it, “celebrate[s] the bicentennial of your nation’s declaration of independence on July 9” and raised a metaphoric glass — he even used the Spanish brindis — in the country’s honor.

In his brief note, Kerry calls Argentina “a regional leader” along with the US and praises its commitment to “democracy, human rights and gender equality.”

You can read the whole message here:

Image via state.gov
Image via state.gov

This Saturday, Argentina will be celebrating the 200-year anniversary of the signing of the declaration of independence from Spain. On Sunday, the nation’s Defense Ministry will be staging a military parade through the capital’s neighborhood of Palermo in which military bands from a number of foreign nations, including the US, will participate.

“This will be a cultural activity with the aim of strengthening ties with participating nations,” Defense Minister Julio Martínez said.

The other nations are Bolivia, Chile, Spain, France, Italy, Morocco, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay.

Strengthening bilateral relations between Argentina and the US has been a running theme throughout President Mauricio Macri’s administration. In March, US President Barack Obama came to Argentina in a historic State visit, the first since Bill Clinton’s 1997 visit with former President Carlos Menem. US-Argentine relations took a turn for the worse under former President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner due to a number of reasons, including but not limited to what she saw as Obama snubbing Argentina by excluding it from his Latin America tour and the whole vulture funds debacle.